Ever since the first household radio sets were invented and commercialized, humankind has never looked back and has continued to improve its growth and benefits. The ability to transmit sound over a distance beyond ordinary loudspeakers and megaphones was a novelty and many in those days when radio was in its infancy rejoiced.
In no time, radios spawned all over, and stations that provided information and entertainment sprang up all over the world. Radio was still in its infancy. The benefit of radio was not lost on Ghana (previously Gold Coast) and it remains a huge part of modern Ghanaian life. Radio Broadcasting started around the 1920s and the technology started operating in Ghana on 31st July 1935 as Station ZOY which then morphed into the Ghana Broadcasting Corporation (GBC) after Ghana’s Independence.
As of the second quarter of 2020, there were 428 actively operating radio stations in Ghana. Out of these, 56 radio stations were actively operating in Accra and 49 of them are commercial. Listeners have been indeed spoiled with choices as to what programs on the stations they would like to listen to as opposed to the days when GBC was the sole radio station and the listener was either limited to listening or putting off the radio.
List of top english speaking radio stations in Ghana
- Joy FM 99.7
- Citi FM 97.3
- Starr FM 103.5
- Atlantis FM 87.9
- Class FM 91.3
- Uniiq FM 95.7
- Y FM 107.9
- Zylofon FM 102.1
- 3 FM 92.7
Joy FM 99.7
Joy FM is arguably the leading radio in Ghana that broadcasts in the English language.
It is the pioneer station of the Multimedia Group Limited – one of the largest media conglomerates in Ghana. In 1994, there was a landmark ruling in the Supreme Court of Ghana which opened the doors for private radio stations to operate; Joy FM was the first to pass through that door in 1995 thereby effectively paving the way for many others to be set up.
It is no surprise that Joy FM continues to put up sterling performances in its journalism and sweep awards every year at the industry’s awards ceremonies. So big is the multimedia brand that they have many aspiring journalists and DJs who desire to volunteer on their platform with the hopes of getting their ‘big break’ and being recognized for the value they bring.
Not only has Joy FM excelled in the area of traditional radio, but their online News portal My Joy Online has for a long time been the preferred news channel for credible and authentic information.
Citi FM 97.3
The multiple award-winning media house which is under the Omni Media Group has carved a name for itself in the ever-changing and competitive English radio broadcast industry. Notable among their programs is their early morning Citi Breakfast Show which is their flagship program and is unparalleled in the quality of discussions had as well as the quality of programming.
It is noteworthy that since 2013, the Citi Breakfast Show has been on an award streak and doesn’t seem to be relinquishing that lead soon. In several instances, they have been adjudged the best English-speaking radio station and some polls have shown that many Ghanaians prefer their political programs.
Their General Manager and host of the Citi Breakfast Show is the most influential and renowned personality of the station is Bernard Avle. He is a media influencer and has been able to cause social change to a large extent. Citi FM is the biggest competitor to Joy FM and year after year, they both trade the title of the Best English Broadcast Radio Station in Ghana.
Starr FM 103.5
Launched and unveiled in 2014, Starr FM has gone ahead to show excellence in what they do. The radio station is part of the Excellence In Broadcasting – a media conglomerate whose aim is to raise the standard of broadcast journalism in Ghana.
They caused a lot of talk and anticipation when they were launched because they succeeded in poaching many of the celebrity journalists and technical people from other institutions, most of them from Joy FM. Starr FM became the station to listen to because they had most of the celebrity journalists and presenters and had a very interesting line up of programs.
Starr FM is still doing amazing work and in 2020 the Host of their Morning Show, Francis Abban won the Greater Accra an award for being the best radio personality in the Greater Accra region. They are absolutely on top of issues and give relevant commentary on social issues in Ghana and beyond. Starr FM is worth listening to.
Atlantis FM 87.9
If you love to listen to great quality music while you work or relax, Atlantis FM is the radio station for you. This station is famed for its dedication to providing its listeners with 24 hours music interspersed with hourly news and a few adverts. They are mostly true to their slogan of “more great music, no pointless talk”, hence they play a wide variety of songs all in English and their news in brief just to update their listeners on what is happening in Ghanaian news.
Since 1995 when the radio station was established, they have progressively increased their audience base year by year and this has kept them in business till now. They can be confidently described as the only Radio Station in Ghana that is committed to giving their audiences world-class music around the clock and their audiences range from the young to the old because of the different genres of quality music being played.
On a hot, slow, and quiet afternoon, Atlantis Radio should be your go-to for the appropriate music that would calm your nerves and keep you entertained.
Class FM 91.3
As part of a group of companies, Class FM has risen to become one of the household names in the English radio broadcast sector in Ghana.
Churning out great credible news and post news discussions, it is easy to get latched on this station. The station has brought out innovative programs and has continued to gain good followership year after year. The fact that some of their on-air personalities are being poached tells a lot about the strides they are making in the radio broadcast industry in Ghana.
For those who love to read, Class FM has a Book Review Show called “Authors’ Haven” which runs every Saturday from 5 to 6 pm GMT. Authors Haven has grown to become one of the most patronized Book Review Shows on air. Country music has found a home in Ghana and many people patronize the art form because of its usual nostalgic melodies and its storytelling. Class FM has an active country music show which is well patronized. It is difficult to get bored when listening to Class FM.
Uniiq FM 95.7
The history of radio in Ghana is impossible to be told if the role of the Ghana Broadcasting Corporation (GBC) is not underscored. GBC had been the only media station that operated in Ghana for decades before a Supreme Court ruling made it possible for private-owned media houses to also operate. Hence, GBC has been the choice of the relatively older generation.
Uniiq FM is the name of the radio station managed by GBC and they have won many awards over the years for sterling reportage and journalism practices. They have some shows for children notable among them is ‘Curious Minds’ on which they allow very young kids to give their perspectives on issues and have fun activities whiles learning new things. Uniiq FM is a relatively highly censored platform, in that certain words that other private stations are quite liberal with are avoided and this also appeals to a certain group of people as well. Their country music show is a very popular one too.
Y FM 107.9
This is a radio station that has branded itself to be “for the young and young at heart” and hence their programs reflect the youthful appeal and approach to things.
Located at the South-Western part of the Accra Mall, the green branded radio station has been a destination for advertisers who see the youth as their target customers notably a lot of up-and-coming as well as well-established artists. It is no surprise therefore that they are an entertainment-focused station and have had certain celebrities like Caroline Sampson, Trigmatic (local artiste), Miss Naa, Akosua Hanson, and many more who have at one time hosted or continue to host certain shows at the station.
Y FM has a really large and youthful following and will stop at nothing to patronize their live events and programs and this makes them a brand that other companies readily identify with to sell their products to the youth. Captivating as their programs have been, YFM has continued to thrill their audiences with great programming, intuitive games with rewards, timely and revealing interviews, and many more. Truly YFM is for the young and young at heart.
Zylofon FM 102.1
Another Radio station that is heavily promoting the entertainment industry in Ghana is Zylofon FM. This is an English Broadcast radio station with a massive number of following. This patronage was mostly because of an influential radio personality called Blakk Rasta who had an entertainment and education show which was widely patronized.
Also, the Morning Show named “ShowBiz Agenda” has gained a lot of attention mainly because of the discussions of occurrences in the Ghana music industry as well as interviewing popular artists as well as not popular ones. This has been a good platform for many advertisers to leverage to make their brands known to the general public.
The Taxi Driver Show, which is a reggae show hosted by Blakk Rasta has been nominated for the Radio and Television Personality Awards ever since Zylofon started that program and it continues to be the people’s favorite.
3 FM 92.7
As part of a group of companies, 3FM stands as a sister company to the ever-popular TV3 (one of the first television stations in the country) and Onua FM (Akan-speaking station). They have slowly grown and gained the trust of listeners, many of who have become stuck to the station, and some have become serial callers and ardent commentators on their social media platforms.
3FM has various kinds of popular radio programs for their discerning listeners. Morning Show, midmorning, and Drive-time (afternoon to late afternoon) show and especially, Community Connect – Ghana’s leading community-focused program dedicated to bringing the challenges of inner cities to the fore as well as looking at pragmatic solutions to solve these challenges. 3FM has become a force to reckon with in the English radio broadcast industry here in Ghana and some awards they have bagged are a testament to that.
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