TV and radio stations in Tanzania risk being fined or their licences withdrawn for hiring ‘non-professionals’ like DJs and comedians, the Tanzania Communications Regulatory Authority (TCRA) has said.
In a notice published in the country’s dailies, the media houses should hire people who have the “required qualifications” to practise journalism.
“Those who don’t heed this warning will be fined or have their licences withdrawn as stipulated in law,” said TCRA.
Trained journalists have been complaining of being sidelined in the job market, even as the media industry prefers to employ DJs and comedians who are known to draw larger audiences due to controversy.
This led to the enactment of the 2016 Media Services Act, which stipulates that only those with a minimum of a communication-related diploma (one-two years of study) can be be accredited as journalists.
According to the government, those without media training are prone to ignoring the profession’s ethical standards.
The same issue has been a bone of contention, with most radio and TV stations hiring comedians and DJs instead of trained journalists.