Wednesday, November 23, 2016

MY EVENING WITH LAGOS' RADIO STATIONS

Again, the radio takes over by six o'clock in the evening for another two hours, when I close from work and make my way back from Lagos Island to my home on the mainland. I tune in to INSPIRATION 92.3FM for the news that lasts ten minutes, then follow that with the more comprehensive news of Nigeria's first privately owned radio station, RAYPOWER 100.5FM, that has correspondents reporting as you'd find with the dour reportage of most  government owned stations, complete with static in the background. What I miss in the first ten minutes, I will hear again when the news is being recapped. By six-thirty I flip to CLASSIC 97.3FM's fifteen minutes of news, which feels like an elaboration of exactly what I've heard on Inspiration FM already at six (with more sound bites), but hardly as concise as Raypowers'. News on Radio Stations in Lagos is more like the News Agency Of Nigeria, NAN distributing the same content to the different media houses to do with it what they wish. It's so bad sometimes that you'd hear the same news, with the same lettering and wordings from different stations, especially the private ones, without even an attempt at rephrasing it. The next fifteen minutes before seven, and the other fifteen after seven I spend listening to what other stations have to offer, or go back to my soundtrack for the day to get inspired for the night.


I used to listen to SHARING LIFE ISSUES with CHAZ-B, immediately after the six o'clock news on INSPIRATION FM, while he was alive but it was becoming ridiculous, both topics and solutions provided for problems, that I was skipping episodes already weeks before he died. The attempt to keep the program alive in his memory, in my estimation has failed, especially with constant  movement of the program from one station to the other. Presently, I can't even say off my head now, which station is airing it, that's even besides the mediocrity on display with the new hosts and crazy callers to the program who come up with the strangest of problems that are never theirs but of their friends, as if even if that was true, it was right to backbite or gossip about their friends' emotional challenges, especially of a sexual nature and demons on radio.


J-A-J's TOP SEVEN JAMS AT SEVEN, on RHYTHMS 93.7FM used to cut it for me at some point, in fact it used to be where I go to for the latest in hip-hop, and I can't really place my hand on the real reason why I stopped spending thirty minutes listening to that program, even though that part where the host (aka The Mega-Don) inserts his eternal rap skit towards the end of the show, was beginning to get boring. Nowadays, it is only by chance that I fall on the program, just to probably lighten up the evening before I tune-in to KUBANJI DIRECT on RADIO CONTINENTAL 102.3FM, hosted by a CITIZEN JONES (USEN), veteran journalist in memory of the pioneer host, the late Momoh Kubanji (just like what was later attempted with Chaz B to not so much of a success) who died a few years back.

CITIZEN JONES IN THE STUDIO.

Radio Continental, like some other radio stations in Nigeria, is owned by a politician. It isn't surprising therefore that the narrative is usually skewed in favour of the political leanings of the owner of such media houses, hence radio stations like Raypower and Rhythms carry news that favour the People's Democratic Party, PDP while Radio Continental favour the All Progressives' Congress, APC. Nowhere else is the corrupting influence of a politician affecting reportage and even the discuss on radio more prominently than at Radio Continental. It is as if the news is vetted by the Lord owner before it goes on air, in fact in the sister TV station (TV Continental), you can see the eyes of presenters doting behind the cameras like they're receiving reprimands when they seem to stray from the political line issued them for onward projection on screen. The name of that one-hour program with four women, one of them a Muslim woman with hijab on TV-Continental skips me now.


That's how a beautiful program like KUBANJI DIRECT became one sided, shutting it's ears to opposition, now that the party it promotes is in power, unfortunately at the hands of a veteran journalist, who should know better. It is so bad that even as lately as last night, a contributor via Twitter accused the host of his bias, in favour of the ruling APC, just like I did weeks back trouncing the program for lacking intellect backed discourse, and was surprised to

hear my tweet read on the program, of course with the host brushing off my observations with a wave of his hands, and one of his minions rushing to attack and start a Twitter war with me. Interestingly, now that his paymaster appears to be at loggerheads with the echelon of his party, time will tell how long he can continue to back a directionless  government that he and his likes helped foster and continue to goad on, in spite of the truth staring them in the face.


Despite the heavy journalistic misnomer that that program represents, I still listen to it. Yes, with the wide eyed, unrepentant protagonists of the present Human Rights abusing, economy debasing APC, and President Buhari sycophants like Alester Wilcox and Professor Chris Nwokobia guesting most times. Men who can't see anything wrong in a government that's driven the country to the precipice in less than two years. Once a while "Citizen Jones", will bring fair minded Nigerians to contribute and present alternate views, only to continuously shut them down, and even going ahead to express his own views when he shouldn't have one, at least while he sits as umpire in his program. It is with that program that I gauge the thinking of those who sold Nigerians a bad deal in the last elections, standing now to make excuses for a  government that has done nothing but fail to deliver on ALL its election promises, without missing any opportunity to put the blame on previous governments, even for mistakes that every rational human being can see was at the behest of the present government.


So, unfortunately my mornings aren't bettered by my evenings on radio. I wish I could have BBC on FM and not have to listen live with data, as it's embarrassing, except when I'm in the north of Nigeria, to go about with a transistor radio, scanning the shortwave at different times of the day for the signals of the RADIO STATION OF THE WORLD. I might just listen to music, but even the so called "more music, less talk" radio station is fast losing its signature brand with OAPs angling to hear their "fake accented" English most times they come on air, breaking sweet music just to vomit the most mundane of thoughts from the recess in their head. Sometimes, I just give up hope on political discourse on radio on weekdays and look forward to weekends, which again is more of the same when it's about politics, as you shall see when I dissect that also, to give you a peek into how radio goes with me on weekends.


'kovich


PICTURE CREDIT:
- https://mobile.twitter.com/RC1023FM/status 

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