For the first time in almost a year, live broadcasting will return to CKLB on Monday.
On Friday, the GNWT announced plans to contribute $400,000 to the Native Communications Society (NCS) of the NWT on an annual basis for broadcasting purposes.
The non-profit organization, which oversees the troubled Yellowknife-based radio station, was forced to pull live programming last August due to funding cuts.
Since then, listeners tuning into 101.9 FM have heard a reel of automated music and ads void of any Aboriginal language programming, news and interviews.
But now, 10 months later, the “Voice of Denendeh” is set to return to the airwaves.
Starting June 1, CKLB will resume live broadcasting in the Dehcho and Tlicho languages. More of the territory’s official languages, including French, will be added later this year.
“I would like to thank the Government of the Northwest Territories … for making Aboriginal language programming and broadcasting a priority for the government,” said NCS chairman JC Catholique in a statement.
Education, culture and employment minister Jackson Lafferty announced the funding increases in the legislature Friday.
ECE funding will complement nearly $700,000 in funding from the federal government.
“One of the most effective ways to ensure the continued use of all of the NWT’s 11 official languages is simply using and hearing these languages as part of our day to day interactions,” said Lafferty in a statement.
“Aboriginal language broadcasting contributes to both our oral traditions and recording languages for those future generations.
“NCS and CKLB play a critical part in promoting and sustaining our Aboriginal languages across the NWT and it is our priority to support them.”
The GNWT says it will also make every effort to secure funding from the Feds in order to sustain Aboriginal broadcasting in the territory.