Ricochet News

Umhlobo Wenene FM's Putco Mafani leaving to launch his own radio station

Apr 5, 2017
Umhlobo Wenene FM's Putco Mafani leaving to launch his own radio station

Award-winning radio doyenne and Umhlobo Wenene FM Breakfast show presenter, Putco Mafani, bids the SABC station goodbye this week as he will be following his lifetime dream of owning and managing a radio station.

Mafani tendered in his resignation to the station management on Monday  when he indicated that  he will not be available for the coming term as presenter of the much loved Breakfast Eyondlayo Ekuseni (BEE).

Putco will be pursuing his interests with the first 100% Black owned commercial radio station of the Eastern Cape, soon to be launched as both Station Manager and Breakfast Show presenter.

"This has been the most exciting but difficult time for me to leave Umhlobo Wenene FM, a station that for the past 9 years I have called home and achieved a lot with, including being inducted into the SA Radio Hall of Fame, winning a multiple Best Breakfast Show Presenter awards.

"It is good also that at this time of my life I get an opportunity to lead, influence and manage a group of what I envisage, will be the most talented ,dynamic and innovative young broadcasters of the Eastern Cape as the station manager, something I have been wanting to do in a long time" said Mafani.

The station, which will work closely with the MSG Africa Group, will be based in East London.

Given Mkhari, the CEO at MSG Africa Group, said; "We are very excited to be going into this venture with Putco, as he is a seasoned broadcaster and with him at the helm of power at Rhythm FM, the station will grow exponentially.”

Putco can’t stop talking about the time when former Umhlobo Wenene Station Manager, Nada Wotshela, and then Programme Manager, Phumzile Mnci, got him to rescue a breakfast show that was not performing well and urged him to save a sinking ship.

In 2010, when the station's breakfast show had just under 800 000 listeners, but since 'Bhutiza', as he is affectionately known, took over the show, the BEE now boasts over 3 million listeners, more than 60% of the entire station listenership. 

“Having been behind the mic for more than 20 years is sweet on its own but having done it with great radio stations and broadcasters is sweetest; Radio CKI, Radio Xhosa, Channel Africa worldwide, Kaya FM, and back to Umhlobo Wenene FM," said an elated Mafani.

The other cake of his achievements in the industry is all Television shows he has presented, including CCV TV- Cosmo Life, SABC 1-Indwe, SABC Topsport, SABC TV News (Indaba ZesiXhosa).

Putco will not be lost to radio but instead will be conducting auditions around the Eastern Cape, Gauteng and other provinces scouting for new fresh talent, the details of which will be made known.