Radio Broadcasting

Rwanda: US-Owned Gospel Radio Station License Revoked For Disparaging Comments About Women

The Rwanda Utilities Regulatory Authority (RURA) has shut down, Amazing Grace Christian Radio, a community Christian radio station for saying women are evil.

The radio station that airs religious sermons was shut down after one of its presenters, Nicolas Niyibikora, was said to have repeatedly referred to women as evil.

A statement released by the regulatory authority said: "The revocation follows failure by Amazing Grace Christian Radio to comply with sanctions of RURA taken after a sermon aired by the Radio on 29 January 2018 in which radio presenter Nicolas Niyibikora repeatedly insulted women referring to them as evil."

The founder of the radio station, an American evangelist, known as Gregg Schoof, has filed a lawsuit to get the radio back on the air.

This court case will be heard Thursday in Kigali, Rwanda's capital.

Schoof said he had done nothing wrong while responding to the shocking news of the shutdown. He also added that he was directed to plead guilty against his conscience and that the presenter, Niyibikora, has not yet been found guilty.

The evangelist said: "I am not Pastor Nicholas. He must apologise for himself if he is found guilty.  There has been no testimony, no hearing, and no court case for his message yet. So RURA wants me to apologise for someone who is still presumed to be innocent?"

Schoof has distanced himself from the said "evil" comments and stated that he does not support the use of such language on women.

"I am against any language that is anti-women. The Bible protects and promotes the rights of women. But I have not gotten the entire translation of the sermon since it was in the Kinyarwanda language," said Schoof to the Rwandan Media Commission (RMC) ethics committee.

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