Radio Bantu on SABC Plus

SABC Plus app


Radio Bantu on SABC+


Radio Bantu can be found on the SABC Plus app: (Download for free on iOS, android and the web)

Radio Bantu on SABC+

Radio Bantu on SABC+









Vibrant nostalgia echoing through the airwaves, SABC’s groundbreaking 1960s initiative, fostering cultural expression and shaping the enduring legacy of iconic stations in South Africa


Nostalgic Radio kept vibrant by the SABC

Step into the time machine and journey back to the dynamic 1960s when the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) laid the foundation for a groundbreaking initiative – the birth of Radio Bantu. Crafted exclusively for African audiences in their diverse languages, this fully-fledged station made its debut with Zulu as its pioneering language. Quickly, other vernacular languages joined the eclectic mix, weaving a vibrant tapestry of cultural expression.

The pivotal moment arrived on January 1, 1962, when the SABC introduced a revolutionary high-frequency modulation system. This not only marked the inception of FM radio but also ushered in a new era of 12-hour mass-based broadcasting, featuring 12 languages. Zulu, Xhosa, Southern Sotho, Northern Sotho, Tswana, Tsonga, and Venda became the voices resonating across the airwaves. The immediacy, accessibility, affordability, and portability of this wireless marvel catapulted Radio Bantu into becoming the cornerstone of black popular culture.

This transformative journey birthed iconic stations such as Radio Sesotho (1/1/1962, now Lesedi FM 1996), Radio Zulu (1/1/1962, Ukhozi FM), Radio Setswana (1/6/1962, Motsweding FM), Radio Lebowa (1/6/1962, Thobela FM), Radio Tsonga (1/2/1965, Munghana Lonene), Radio Venda (1/2/1965, Phala Phala FM), Radio Swazi (1982, Ligwalagwala FM), Radio Ndebele (16/3/1983, Ikwekwezi FM), and Radio Xhosa (1966, Umhlobo Wenene). These radio pioneers, each with its unique language, seamlessly became integral parts of the cultural landscape.

Fast forward to 1996, and these radio stations underwent a transformative evolution, solidifying their current status. Join us as we celebrate the enduring legacy of these stations that have played a pivotal role in shaping the cultural soundscape of South Africa. And don’t forget, you can also catch the Radio Bantu stream on SABC+ Nostalgic Radio, ensuring that this vibrant piece of history continues to thrive.