The President of ECOWAS Commission, Dr Jean-Claude Brou, has said in a bid to promote the regional character of the ECOWAS Community, the newly inaugurated ECOWAS Radio [formerly UNMIL Radio] will broadcast in English, French and Portuguese, which are the official languages of the sub-regional body.

He said, however, the radio will initially transmit in the English language, owning to the location of its headquarters in the Anglophone country of Liberia, and the fact that ECOWAS Radio is an outgrowth of the UNMIL Radio which transmitted all its programmes in English.

In a statement read on his behalf recently at the turnover of the UNMIL Radio to ECOWAS Commission, Dr. Brou said the transitional period from April to June will be devoted to working out the modus operandi covering the technical, financial and programming aspects of expanding the important peace building facility.

"We all anticipate that the radio will support programs in our indigenous languages as a further means of strengthening our march to an ECOWAS of people and promote cultural and social integration," he said.

He added that in expanding its mandate, the ECOWAS Radio will develop partnership with local community radio stations is all member states to relay its program and develop listenership, targeting radio stations straddling the frontier to benefit from the spillover effect.

He called on the United Nations, especially the Peace Building Commission and their development partners to assist in providing the necessary funding for effective and efficient management of the operation of the ECOWAS Radio.

According to him, massive technical outlay would be required to first maintain the Radio on air as well as expand it to other ECOWAS Member States, using the three official languages and eventually incorporating indigenous languages to ensure socio-cultural integration of the community.

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