Bongani Ndlovu Showbiz Correspondent
Infamous Zvishavane residents — baboons — who were not invited to the YA FM radio station launch in the mining town last weekend, yesterday decided to welcome the station in style by eating parts of the transmission cables.
The station’s chief executive officer, Munyaradzi Hwengwere, said a daring troop of baboons ate through their fibre optic cables while Davis Mugadza was broadcasting the breakfast show, forcing them to go off air for an hour.
Hwengwere said they realised something was wrong when one of their radios went quiet.
“We’ve a radio in the studio which abruptly went quiet. We initially thought it was the ongoing load shedding programme by Zesa, but we later realised the lights were on.
“We’d to contact Tel-One technicians to assist and discovered our transmission tower which is in a mountainous place had been preyed on by baboons. I’m told there were more than five of them that ate into the cable. When we got to the tower, we saw the baboons scurrying away,” Hwengwere said.
He said the disruption which saw them going back on air at 10AM from about 9AM cost them about $1,200 in commercial adverts which were scheduled to flight during that period.
Hwengwere said they would engage relevant authorities to ensure that such an incident does not recur.
“I believe the baboons will be back at our tower and they’ll cause more havoc because of the nature of the place. We’re planning to speak to the relevant authorities to ensure this issue is dealt with once and for all,” he said.
The baboon strike comes barely a week after the new commercial radio station was launched by Acting President Emmerson Mnangagwa.
Available to those within a 40km radius of Zvishavane on FM frequency 91.8, the station can be accessed by those out of Zvishavane and abroad by live streaming.