Veteran radio host John Robbie has on Thursday said his final words to his listeners during his last show on Radio 702.
Robbie is retiring from radio after “30 years unbroken at the station”. After spending three decades at the radio station, Robbie wasn’t sure what he will do after his last show.
Nevertheless he joked about looking forward to not getting up so early in the morning”.
The radio station announced Robbie’s retirement from the airwaves last month. Subsequently, he will be replaced by afternoon drive show host Xolani Gwala.
One of the last comments Robbie made before hanging up his earphones was; “I am still pretty optimistic about SA.” He compared the present state of the nation to what was obtainable when he joined 702 in 1986. This was the time when the country faced a lot of challenges that threatened its existence.
“South Africa was basically involved in a civil war at the stage‚ it was the last throw of the old South Africa‚ PW Botha had refused to cross the Rubicon‚ the townships were in flames‚ Nelson Mandela was still in jail‚ ANC and others were banned‚ you couldn’t mention them on the radio‚ you couldn’t mention ANC‚ PAC‚ Communist Party‚ you couldn’t mention them on the radio‚ or talk to them‚” he said.
However, after 30 years fighting for what’s right‚ Robbie admits that things are looking good for the country.
“Despite the problems‚ we have a thriving democracy‚ things like the public protector‚ things like the parliamentary inquiry into the SABC… they show‚ I believe‚ that things are starting to work”.
Robbie remains positive that the country would get even better after President Jacob Zuma – whom he described as an “unmitigated disaster” finally leaves office.
“I believe in the country‚ we have the potential to not just survive‚ but to thrive.”
All the best wishes to the veteran radio host John Robbie as he goes into another phase in life.