Metro FM – a fiefdom of chaos

By  | Jun 22, 2020, 01:47 PM 

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It is not every day we receive an open letter in our ZAlebs mailbox and we found this one very interesting. Here is Metro FM listener Tania Khozo's open letter to the station asking for the return of Romeo Kumalo.

And I hereby concluded that #RomeoMustComeBack because Metro FM is not where it should be at.  

Well I am sure it is not too often you see anything written starting off with its conclusion. That is just chaotic...and I guess it is so aligned to the institution I will be writing about. I am 37 years old and have been listening to MetroFM for quite some time, well at least since the days of Radio Metro. This station was an epitome of professionalism and discipline. We were so proud. We listened to Metro FM, not just because we were black/African, but because there was something magnetic about this. It pains when I think of pay-off lines such as the “Music Talks” and the early days of “That‘s where you're at”. They represented an air of maturity, progress and growth. They represented something.  

Back then it was impossible to listen to anyone else and that was by conscious choice. And 5FM was still in the process of transformation. Even if they were transformed, I doubt they would have been my choice conscious choice. A few months back whilst driving with my very young sister, she pleaded if she could turn on 5FM as she wanted to listen to this particular show. By habit, my car radio defaults to Metro FM and I would occasionally change it to SAFM from time to time. I did feel a bit betrayed by my sister as I believed she should be listening to Metro FM rather...I however did not show that and just listened with her.

WOW, WOW, WOW was my reaction. There was just an ambiance of maturity about how 5FM conducted itself. There is undisputed respect for listeners’ intellect, amazingly balanced with entertainment that is marinated in doses of humour. WOW 5FM. And now I was ashamed of my initial thoughts. In fact, I was ashamed that I had subjected myself to the chaos of MetroFM for such a long time.  And I am sure my young sister was probably wondering why I did that? Old habits I guess.

It dawned on me that listening to Metro FM was no longer by choice but now it was a matter of habit. Today this station is a fiefdom of chaos in all aspects and unfortunately millions of black South Africans are subjected to that as a daily standard to look up too...

Why am I writing this?  This was prompted by a caller to Rams Mabote’s show, complaining about Unathi and Glen for being subjective. I have always been annoyed by this – not only in their show. But the magic words that will always be uttered to erase all would be – These are my views. This means that millions of other differing views are being treated as being incorrect as they will not receive similar prominence. This then consequently isolates that particular listener. I just felt that maybe that was just me.  On Sunday, a caller complained about Wilson on his show. I always felt some of his complaints – again at times I thought that was just me. I was shocked that some people also felt what I was feeling. So I decided to pen this.

Few examples of unprofessionalism to note:
•    On the website – The First Avenue’s still refers to Sizwe Mabena as being part of the team
•    Rams Mabote’s show never starts on time despite the fact that he know he has time limitations
•    Robert Marawa appears to be promoting Mnet’s interests using MetroFM’s massive following
•    On the website – Events section, there is nothing
•    On the website – News section, only the Creator up above knows what is happening there
•    On the website – Gallery section, last pictures uploaded are dated October 2012
•    On the website – Competitions sections, is pure chaos

And to top it all off, what I may refer to as soft corruption...T-bo Touch pronounces on air that people must go and look at what he has posted on his Twitter account.  He had posted a massive discount he had received from a service provider – and by implication that provider had received “mega” publicity mileage for having done a personal favour for an on-air personality. Furthermore he mentioned the name of the service provider. That is further publicity mileage for no cost at all. This essentially, in my books, is stealing income from the SABC. I hope I am wrong. If that is modus operandi, are also as small businesses allowed to hijack on-air personalities to promote our companies for small favours that we do on the side?

I now find myself listening to 5FM more often. But I must say I am worried about those millions subjected to mediocrity on a daily basis and to them too, it is not by conscious choice. Should they ever listen to 5FM, they will never go back. But I know that is a tall order and hence Mr Romeo Kumalo must come back.

**Tania Khozo**

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