6 February 1998


Churches reject bill to regulate radio stations

Incident details

legal action

(AMARC/IFEX) - According to the Pulsar news agency, Protestant Church
leaders in Brazil asked legislators who adhere to that faith to fight to
amend the bill on radio which is in the final approval stages in
Congress. Also, Dalva de Lurdes Pereira, Secretary of the National
Catholic Association of Community Radio Broadcasters (Asociacion Nacional
Catolica de Radios Comunitarias), said that the 25-watt limit to be
placed on community radio stations' signals is too low.

**Updates IFEX alert of 30 January 1998**

Stations are asking for at least 50 watts, since a weaker signal would
not be able to get broadcasts past tall buildings and mountains.
Religious stations are also opposed to Article 4 of the bill, which
prohibits community stations from carrying out activities to gain
supporters for a particular cause. However, the largest problem for radio
stations will be the article of the bill which prevents them from seeking
funds for their operations. While larger stations will continue to be
allowed to carry advertising, small radio stations will have to survive
only on community donations.

Background Information

Thousands of community stations or small broadcasters operate in Brazil.
Several of these are Catholic or Protestant. It is estimated that two
thousand Protestant stations operate in Sao Paolo alone. On 27 January,
the Senate's Education Commission approved the bill, which is on the
verge of being approved by Congress (see IFEX alert).


World Association of Community Radio Broadcasters
705, rue Bourget, bureau 100, Montreal
Qubec, H4C 2M6
secgen (@) si.amarc.org
Fax:+1 514 8497129

IFEX members working in this country 1

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