Affiliate stations Citizen Radio in Nairobi, Kenya and Radio Free Africa in Mwanza, Tanzania and their audiences, are keenly interested in the U.S. democratic process and how the political parties decide their presidential candidates. VOA Swahili is satisfying this interest through live, interactive programs.<!-- IMAGE -->
Each day, the service's Khadija Riyami has reported live from Denver with an update on Democratic Party Convention speeches and events, and then fielded call-in questions. "The program gives us the opportunity to interact one-on-one with our audience, to answer their questions directly and immediately," says Riyami. "The listeners base many of their questions on the reporting we run at the beginning of each show. They're really paying attention to what's going on here."
After Barack Obama's surprise appearance at the convention Wednesday night following former President Bill Clinton's speech, there was great interest in what he said, how he responded to Clinton, and what his message would be Thursday.
There is added interest in this election from VOA's audience in Africa because Barack Obama has a connection to Kenya through his father. VOA Swahili's interactive programs will continue next week from the Republican Convention in St. Paul, Minnesota.
The Voice of America, which first went on the air in 1942, is a multimedia international broadcasting service funded by the U.S. government through the Broadcasting Board of Governors. VOA broadcasts more than 1,250 hours of news, information, educational, and cultural programming every week to an estimated worldwide audience of more than 115 million people. Programs are produced in 45 languages.
For more information, please call VOA Public Relations at (202) 203-4959, or e-mailaskVOA@VOANews.com.