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The first commercial radio station in South Africa, Springbok Radio went to air in 1950 after almost five years of intense investigation by the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) and after consultations with both Lord Reith of the BBC and the South African Government. The decision to introduce commercial radio was essentially made in order to supplement the SABC's existing public service English and Afrikaans networks. The station therefore also broadcast in both languages.
Many of the drama programmes during the 1950s were imported from Australia but as time moved on and more funding became available, Springbok Radio produced almost all of its programmes within South Africa through a network of independent production houses. At the peak of production almost 90% of programmes were locally made. Many of these independent production houses were forced to close down, however, when the station closed down in 1985. The demise of Springbok Radio was largely the result of public television's arrival in the country in 1976 and the introduction of commercial television two years later.