18 April 2019 | Story Xolisa Mnukwa
Geben van Niekerk
Gerben van Niekerk was recognized as a Bright Star at this year's Liberty Radio Awards.

In 2019, Kovsie FM was recognised by the Liberty Radio Awards as one of the radio stations that secures the future of the radio industry by employing excellence and motivating the consistent raising of standards. 

The Liberty Radio Awards is a transparent awards programme that promotes and highlights excellence by recognising and honouring South Africa’s outstanding radio talent, from in-front-of-the mic presenters to behind-the-scenes producers. The awards have the objective of ensuring that radio remains one of the country’s leading media choices.

The station was nominated in categories including the Best Community Project for the Kovsie FM Cool Kid takeover initiative, and the 2019 Bright Star award, of which University of the Free State (UFS) Student Media Manager and OFM Before Dawn radio presenter, Gerben van Niekerk, was inaugurated as one of the 2019 Liberty Radio Awards Bright Stars. 

Thabang Moselane, UFS alumnus, former OFM radio anchor on A Touch of Thabang, social-media manager for online publication, The Journalist, and freelance researcher, writer, and director for a Johannesburg-based film production company, was also recognised and inducted as a Bright Star at the 2019 Liberty Radio Awards.

2019 Liberty Radio Awards’ Bright Star winner, Van Niekerk, explained that the essence of his job at Kovsie FM is to ensure that the student talent that is produced and groomed in their studios daily, morphs into an array of folk who possess the unquestionable skill and aptitude that is widely sought in commercial South African radio.

A great testimony of Van Niekerk’s mission for Kovsie FM, is former Kovsie FM presenter, Smash Afrika, who has moved on to hosting Live at Night on 5FM, and co-presenting Massive Music on Channel O, and Mzansi Magic with Lalla Hirayama. Former station programme manager, Sam Ludidi, is another gem that was cultivated through Kovsie FM, and now works as rugby presenter on SuperSport TV, and also forms part of the OFM team.