Radio Mallku, Uyuni
I picked up Radio Mallku in November
1999 on the LEM132
DXpedition. Transmitting on 4796.48 kHz (the
official frequency being 4795 kHz), Radio Mallku
was booming after 2300 UTC. I heard their programs
titled Revista Matinal and Sirena Laboral.
The station signs off at around 8 p.m. local time
or midnight UTC. On Sundays programming lasts until
|Salar de Uyuni, a huge salt
plateau, is the biggest attraction of the region.
Mallku is an indigenous
word and means cóndor. The station
was founded four years ago under the name of Radio
A.N.D.E.S, but was legalized only in September 1999
under its present name. Perhaps the illegality of
the operation was one reason why less verifications
from that period were received - at least I didn't
get a reply back then.
Aside from the mountain range,
A.N.D.E.S. referred to the initials of the five
provinces in the area: Antonio Quijarro, Nor Lipez,
Daniel Campos, Enrique Baldiviezo and Sud Lipez.
However, authorities wouldn't allow the station
to operate under the name Radio Andes, because it
closely resembles Radio Los Andes, a Tarija radio
station, thus forcing the station to find a new
Radio Mallku's postal address
is Casilla No. 16, Uyuni, Potosí, Bolivia.
My verification letter was written by Erwin Freddy
Mamani Machaca, Jefe de Prensa y Programación.
He referred to two different slogans, which may
also be heard on the air: Voz de los Trabajadores
Campesinos and La Voz del Altiplano Sud.
The station is administered by Federación
Regional Única de Trabajadores Campesinos
del Altiplano Sud (FRUTCAS), which Freddy describes
as the dueño of the radio station.
In April 2000, when Freddy wrote
to me, the station employed only two people, but
must be using quite a lot of freelance or voluntary
workforce, as the station has five hours of programming
each weekday, and nine and a half hours on Sundays.
In addition to the very
informative verification letter, Freddy sent me
a photo of Hotel de Sal located in the middle
of Salar de Uyuni, a huge salt plateau. The
12.400-square-kilometer salt plateau is a major
tourist attraction, Freddy says. The city Uyuni
itself is an important railroad crossing, but otherwise
the area is a neglected backyard of Bolivia where
people are poor and climate is hostile.
(published on July