Implications of the BBC World Service Cuts

Written evidence from Jorge da Paz Rodrigues

PROPOSED CLOSING DOWN OF THE BBC PORTUGUESE LANGUAGE SERVICE

The announcement of the closure of the Portuguese Language Service to Africa is lamentable and wrong for the following reasons:

1. As fairly new and still developing democracies, aggravated by the fact of the prevailing illiteracy whose peoples very much depend on the easy accessibility of radio, in which the BBC Portuguese Language Service has been a very important source of independent news, to stop it now is a clear dis-service to their own development;

2. There are about 245 millions of people speaking portuguese around the world besides Portugal and Brasil: Angola, Cape Verde islands, Guiné-Bissau, S.Tomé e Príncipe islands, Mozambique, Timor, Macau, etc;

3. Apart from that,  it has been a long tradition for a lot of those peoples to depend on the BBC as their only source of news;

4. Considering the many different dialects, in which governments such as the Angolan one adopted the Portuguese language as a unifying factor, the BBC to stop its transmissions is not only a big mistake but also a sad departure from the traditional and long standing as well as most appreciated  British solidarity.

5. TRUST AND WILL BE GRATEFUL THAT YOU CONSIDER THESE IMPORTANT POINTS AND TAKE THE DUE ACTION AT THE ANNOUNCED COMMITTEE REVIEW OVER THE PROPOSED CLOSURES AT THE BBC WORLD SERVICE.

14 February 2011