Radio Biafra: December 19, 2015

Live off-air recording of the clandestine station Radio Biafra on 19 December 2015 beginning at 20:50:31 UTC on a shortwave frequency of 11600 kHz. This was one of the first broadcasts after Radio Biafra's return to the air following the termination or non-renewal of their contract with the previous transmitter facility. The program begins with the Biafran national anthem at 20:50:36 UTC, followed by a piece of music and then extended commentary in English. The program abruptly ended at 21:43:36 UTC. Believed to be scheduled between 20:00 and 23:00 UTC, the delayed start of the program, some audio dropout during the program, and the abrupt end of the program, may indicate studio to transmitter link problems. The speaker announced that it was a live transmission. 

The broadcast is believed to be from the Kostinbrod (near Sofia), Bulgaria, transmitter site with a transmitter power of 100 kW and is directed to Southeastern Nigeria.

The broadcast was received by the Web-interface wideband software-defined radio at the University of Twente in Enschede, The Netherlands, with a "Mini-Whip" antenna in AM mode with 5.09 kHz RF filtering. Reception was fair with some fading.

Radio Biafra: September 4, 2015

On September 4, 2015, I received a tip from SWLing Post contributor, Dan Robinson: Radio Biafra, a new clandestine station, was audible on 15,560 kHz via the Universite Twente Web SDR.

Despite miserable propagation conditions, I tuned my receiver to 15,560 kHz and was surprised to hear a weak signal from Radio Biafra, here in the eastern US. I recorded a few minutes before conditions changed and Biafra’s signal began to fade.

This was the first time I had logged Radio Biafra, so I was amazed to have copy clear enough to understand.

Wikipedia has a short entry for Radio Biafra:

Radio Biafra also known as Voice of Biafra, is a radio station that was originally founded by the government of the Republic of Biafra but is currently operated by Mazi Nnamdi Kanu. Believed to have had its first transmission before the Nigeria-Biafra war, the radio station was instrumental in the broadcast of speeches and propaganda by Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu to the people of the Republic of Biafra.

[…]Radio Biafra currently transmits via the internet and shortwave broadcast targeted majorly around Eastern Nigeria. Radio Biafra claims to be broadcasting the ideology of Biafra –”Freedom of the Biafra people”.

[…]Radio Biafra has been met with mixed reactions. While some critics have criticized the station for “inciting war” through its programmes and “preaching hate messages” against Nigeria which it refers to as a “zoo”, an editor for Sahara Reporters wrote in defence of the radio station after he compared Radio Biafra with the British Broadcasting Corporation Hausa service.

On 14 July 2015, it was reported in the media that the radio station had been jammed because it did not have a broadcast license from the Nigerian Broadcasting Commission. However, the radio station in a swift reaction labelled such claims as “lies” and went on to release its new frequency details to the public.

Note that the Wikipedia entry for Radio Biafra is rather new, having only been created in August, 2015.

The following short recording was made using my WinRadio Excalibur hooked up to a large skyloop antenna:

This two hour recording, by Dan Robinson, was made via the Universite Twente Web SDR in the Netherlands: