WFM, First Women Station Berths
IF you are passionate about issues concerning women and their families, then this is surely an exciting time, as the Nigerian airwave is set to witness the first ever women radio station dubbed W FM (91.7). Though located in Ogun State, the station, which is owned by St. Ives Communications, will transmit across other states, especially in South West, including Lagos where it will surely enjoy huge listenership.
The formal unveiling ceremony held on Wednesday, at the Protea Hotel, GRA, Ikea, Lagos, witnessed the first public presentation of the first set of On Air Personalities (OAPs), whose voices will drive the station.
In what’s akin to a scene from an episode of ShowTime, the quartet of Abisola Grace Aiyeola, Nigerian British born currently studying Business management at National Open University of Nigeria; Nigeria’s budding actress and singer Funmi Jinadu, who cut her teeth in radio broadcasting at BBC Bristol, UK and an active member of the National Union of Journalists, United Kingdom; Bolatito Bez Idakula, a former banker with a B.Sc. in Politics and International Studies from the University of Warwick, England, with an MSc. in Management from Imperial College London and Chinedu Faith Nwagha, a public speaker, customer service consultant and an advocate of personal development, were presented to the media as the leading voices and faces of the FM station.
Speaking at the event, the promoter of the station Toun Okewale-Sonaiya stated that the quartet were selected from over 5,000 applicants that showed interest in working for WFM 91.7.
“The selection process was thorough and painstakingly executed. We were lucky to have veteran broadcasters like Femi Sowoolu, Seun Olagunju, Sydney Ufeli of Spik Rait, Saund Rait, etc. on the selection panel. So, what we are serving the listening public are the best of our bests,” she said.
Toun, herself a broadcaster of many years’ experience whose career traverse Nigeria and United Kingdom, informed that “one of the amazing qualities of these on-air-personalities is that each of them can function in any arm of the station’s operations. They are all undergoing training that will see them performing creditably well on any programme,” she enthused.
Though WFM 91.7 prides itself as an ‘unapologetically for women’ radio station, Toun reiterated that, “it is not just about women or straight-jacketed tailored for women; it is a radio station for women, the men in their lives and for the whole family. The station will cover and discuss every aspect of our lives, be it sports, business, politics, governance, economy, health, family, relationship issues, youth etc. However, all these issues will be presented from the women perspective. How we (women) see it.
“Though we are licensed for women, WFM 91.7 will also cater for the men and the family by engaging on issues of local, national and international importance for all. It will operate 24 hours of talk and less music. The station will address everyday issues for women and their families. It will be a reliable, leading and trusted source for all related news, information and matters of interests for women and their families,” she enthused.
Present at the unveiling ceremony were top officials and directors of St. Ives Communications, the holding company that runs WFM 91.7 radio station. They include: Dr. Babatunde Okewale, Executive Chairman of St. Ives Communications, Kiki Wale Okewale, Executive Director at St. Ives Communications, Olayinka Lawal, Head of Sales & Marketing at WFM 91.7 and other staff of WFM 91.7 radio.
In what has been described as an epoch-making event, the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) recently issued licence to St. Ives Communications to operate the specialised and gender sensitive radio communication initiative, which has been credited to be the brainchild of Dr. Babatunde Okewale who is also the Chief Medical Director at St. Ives Specialist Hospital, Lagos, Toun Okewale Sonaiya and Kiki Wale Okewale, both Executive Directors of St. Ives Communications.