The Zimbabwe Broadcasting Holdings (ZBH) Chief Executive Happison
Muchechetere says the state-controlled broadcaster is set to
reintroduce a second television station in August, according to a media alert from Misa.

 ZBC intends to reoccupy ZTV 2 once loaned to private station which was shut down in 2002.

The station will first broadcast within a 60km radius of Harare and then extend to Bulawayo and other cities. This is not the first time that ZBH has run two television stations.

It used to have a TV 2 channel in the mid 1980s until the 1990s when it leased the channel to Munhumutapa African Broadcasting Corporation (MABC) and after that Joy TV. While MABC allegedly switched off in 1998 for failing to service transmission costs, Joy TV was shut down under the tenure of Former Information Minister Jonathan Moyo.

Joy TV started operating in July 1997 broadcasting to viewers within a radius of approximately 75-90miles around Harare. Its programming included live sport, dramas, comedies, music, soapies and thrillers.

A 1999 survey showed that Joy TV attracted 37% of the nation’s television viewers. The station was, however, closed on 31 May 2002 after its lease was cancelled for allegedly violating the 2001 Broadcasting Services Act. Its closure gave the state controlled ZBC monopolistic control as a sole broadcaster.

Muchechetere disclosed plans to reintroduce the second television station while responding to questions from the Chairperson of the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Media, Information and Publicity, Gift Chimanikire, who wanted to know why ZBH had not applied for more broadcasting licenses. Muchechetere also pointed out that there is need to amend the statutory requirement of airing 75 percent local content because it had dismally failed.