Nigeria’s first only women radio station launched in London
Nigeria’s first and only radio station dedicated to women and their families, WFM 91.7 was launched at Holiday Inn, Mayfair, recently by Toun Okewale Sonaiya, a former broadcaster with RayPower FM, Lagos, Nigeria.
An initiative of St. Ives Communications, which she described as a “family business,” the station will hit the Nigerian airwaves from October 1, when it will start it’s test transmission.
Licensed by the Nigerian Broadcasting Corporation (NBC) to operate on the airwaves of just two states, Lagos and Ogun, Sonaiya, who is a director of the company, told the excited guests of – not surprisingly – mainly women, that the name was chosen from a pool of over 50 that well wishers and supporters suggested from across the world from countries such as the U.S., China, Sierra Leone, United Kingdom, Albania and Nigeria, sent in various names before the company settled for WFM 91.7.
“There were contributions from all over the world through facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Whatsapp and email,” and after “carefully collating the name choice and comments of every one that suggested a name, WFM was chosen,” she noted.
In a press release, the company issued within minutes of the launching, Okewale Sonaiya said the station will nevertheless not exclude anyone from its programming.
“WFM 91.7, though licensed for women, will 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,” and address “everyday issues for women and their families.”
The statement also restated what she told guests during the event, WFM, “will be a reliable, leading and trusted source for all related news, information and matters of interests for women and their families.”
A staff of Nigerian High Commission in London, Mrs. Olufolake Abdulrazaq, spoke prior to the unveiling of the station’s name, and welcomed the historic women’s only 24/7 station, noting that “Nigerians love to debate” and as such, the station will serve as a good avenue for women to voice their views. Sonaiya later fielded questions from guests, and assured them that the station would definitely promote and champion the cause of Nigerian women, including those who live in the rural areas.
“If a woman is being abused, we will talk about it; if an issue concerns a woman, we will talk about it,” she told the excited guests that included the Chairman of the Central Association of Nigerians in the United Kingdom, Mr. Tunde Loye.