(AMARC/PPF/IFEX) - August 24, 2010, Kathmandu - The World Association of Community Radio Broadcasters (AMARC) and the Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF) appeal to the Government of Pakistan and Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) to allow setting up of emergency community radio stations in areas that have suffered from the current floods in Pakistan.
We call upon all concerned agencies in Pakistan to be flexible and responsive to proposals for the establishment of community based broadcasting mechanisms so that any information gap that exists among the affected people is fulfilled and relief operations are made highly effective. AMARC offers its knowledge and expertise in setting up emergency broadcasting mechanisms, gathered from working around the world in similar situations of natural disasters.
The important role of community radio in times of natural disaster for aiding relief operations as well as for supporting rehabilitation and rebuilding has been proven many times over. The recent examples of the positive power of community radio was seen in the earthquakes of Haiti and Chile where AMARC played an important role in facilitating the setting up of emergency broadcasting stations. It was not so long ago that community radios were brought to the forefront of the efforts to provide relief and rehabilitate those affected by the tsunami and floods in Indonesia.
AMARC and PPF highly appreciate the valuable work being carried out by radio stations in the flood affected areas. There is a need to complement theses efforts by bridging the gaps of information at the very local levels and among displaced peoples. This can be effectively achieved by setting up emergency community radio stations.
AMARC, PPF and all other AMARC members in Pakistan offer sincere condolences to the families of those that have perished in the floods in Pakistan. We offer our solidarity and prayers to those that have suffered huge emotional and material losses and extend our support to those that are engaged in helping the affected.
Pakistan Press Foundation