Tuesday, August 15, 2006

VOA's Studio 7 signal jammed to Zimbabwe

In its weekly media update, the Media Monitoring Project of Zimbabwe (MMPZ) says it has been unable to receive a consistently clear signal from the Voice of America (VOA)’s Zimbabwe flagship programme, Studio 7 broadcasting service. “The steady droning interference appears to corroborate earlier reports that the Central Intelligence Organisation and engineers from the Ministry of Information were “now working flat out” to find ways of “completely” jamming the radio station’s broadcasts into Zimbabwe,” said the MMPZ. ”The jamming indicates a single-minded determination to ensure that the station’s broadcasts into Zimbabwe cannot be heard.”

When the jamming started in June, VOA spokesperson, Joe O’Connell was quoted by the Committee to Protect Journalists as saying only the mediumwave broadcasts were affected. But in the week under review the station’s shortwave signal also appears to have been interfered with. “For example, of the week’s Studio 7 shortwave bulletins that MMPZ tried to monitor, only three (1/8, 2/8 & 4/8) were mostly audible, but even then under constant interference. The other two (31/7 & 3/8) were completely muffled by a continuous grinding sound that specifically coincided with the start and end of the bulletin.”

(Source: MMPZ via zimbabwejournalists.com/R Netherlands Media Network weblog)