The Sound Kitchen

Will Nicolas Sarkozy soon be wearing an ankle bracelet?

Audio 24:43
Sound Kitchen Podcast
Sound Kitchen Podcast RFI

This week on The Sound Kitchen you’ll hear the answer to the question about former French president Nicolas Sarkozy’s corruption and abuse of office conviction. There’s “On This Day”, listener news, Ollia’s “Happy Moment” and lots of great music – all that, and the new quiz question too! Just click on the “Audio” arrow above and enjoy!


Hello everyone! Welcome to The Sound Kitchen weekly podcast, published every Saturday – here on our website, or wherever you get your podcasts. You’ll hear the winners' names announced and the week’s quiz question, along with all the other ingredients you’ve grown accustomed to: your letters and essays, “On This Day”, quirky facts and news, interviews, and great music … so be sure and listen every week.

During the French lockdown to fight the Coronavirus last spring, we were constrained to stop broadcasting Paris Live, our afternoon news broadcast.

In the meanwhile, we are focusing on our digital presence, and making our website the best! You can read breaking news articles on our site, as well as in-depth analysis of current affairs, both in France and across the globe.

We are also developing new and exciting podcasts for you. There’s Paris PerspectiveAfrica Calling, Spotlight on France, and of course, The Sound Kitchen. We have a bilingual series - an old-time radio show, with actors (!) to help you learn French, called Les voisins du 12 bis. And there is the excellent International Report, too.

As you see, sound is still quite present at the RFI English service!  Keep checking our website for updates on the latest from our excellent staff of journalists.

Send me your music requests! I’ll make programmes of your favourite music when I can’t be in the kitchen to cook up something new for you … write to me at

To listen to our features from your PC, go to our website and click on the three horizontal bars on the top right, choose Listen to RFI / Podcasts, and you’ve got ‘em! You can either listen directly or subscribe and receive them directly on your mobile phone.

To listen to our features from your mobile phone, slide through the tabs just under the lead article (the first tab is “Headline News”) until you see “Podcasts”, and choose your show. 

Teachers, take note! I save postcards and stamps from all over the world to send to you for your students. If you would like stamps and postcards for your students, just write and let me know. The address is   If you would like to donate stamps and postcards, feel free! Our address is listed below. 

RFI Clubs: Be sure to always include Audrey Iattoni ( from our Listener Relations department on all your RFI Club correspondence. Remember to copy me ( when you write to them so that I know what is going on, too. N.B. You do not need to send her your quiz answers! Email overload!

And don't forget, there is a Facebook page just for you, the RFI English Clubs. Only members of RFI English Clubs can belong to this group page, so when you apply to join, be sure you include the name of your RFI Club and your membership number. Everyone can look at it, but only members of the group can post on it. If you haven’t yet asked to join the group, and you are a member of an independent, officially recognised RFI English Club, go to the Facebook link above and fill out the questionnaire!!!!! (if you do not answer the questions, I click “decline”).

There’s a Facebook page for members of the general RFI Listeners Club, too. Just click on the link and fill out the questionnaire, and you can connect with your fellow Club members around the world. Be sure you include your RFI Listeners Club membership number (most of them begin with an A, followed by a number) in the questionnaire, or I will have to click “Decline”, which I don’t like to do!

Welcome to our new RFI Listeners Club member! Dewan Rafiqul Islam, who is the president of the Friends Radio Club in Naogaon, Bangladesh.

So glad you have joined us, Dewan!

You too can be a member of the RFI Listeners Club – just write to me at and tell me you want to join, and I’ll send you a membership number. It’s that easy. When you win a Sound Kitchen quiz as an RFI Listeners Club member, you receive a premium prize.

This week’s quiz: On 6 March, I asked you a question about France's former president, Nicolas Sarkozy. He had just been found guilty on charges of corruption and abuse of office and was sentenced to three years in prison, with two of those three years suspended. Sarkozy's two co-defendants, the lawyer Thierry Herzog and former senior judge Gilbert Azibert, were also found guilty and given the same sentence as Sarkozy. Sarkozy is appealing the verdict, which means the prison sentence is on hold until the appeals trial. My question to you was: what are the details of those charges? What was former French president Nicolas Sarkozy found guilty of doing?  

The answer is:  As RFI English journalist Michael Fitzpatrick wrote in his article “Nicolas Sarkozy to appeal against three-year sentence for fraud, abuse of office”:

"Sarkozy was found guilty of offering to help a judge obtain a senior job in Monaco in exchange for inside information on an inquiry into the former president's campaign finances.

Prosecutors say Sarkozy and his lawyer Herzog tried to bribe judge Azibert over an inquiry into claims the former leader had received illicit payments from L'Oréal heiress Liliane Bettencourt during his successful 2007 presidential campaign.

Prosecutor Céline Guillet said it had been established "with certainty" that Judge Azibert transmitted confidential information about the Bettencourt case to his friend Herzog.

Nicolas Sarkozy is facing another trial, along with 13 other people, on charges related to the alleged illegal financing of his 2012 presidential campaign.

The winners are:  Ferhat Bezazel, the president of the RFI Butterflies Club Ain Kechera in West Skikda, Algeria, and RFI Listeners Club members Krysztof Borski from Poznan, Poland; Jayanta Chakrabarty from New Delhi, India; Ralf Urbanczyk from Eisleben, Germany, and Zenon Teles, the president of the Christian – Marxist – Leninist - Maoist Association of Listening DX-ers in Goa, India.

Congratulations winners!

Here’s the music you heard on this week’s programme: “Capriccio Espagnol” by Nicolai Rimsky-Korsakov, played by guitarist Jorge Caballero; “Kukulkan” by Ricardo Lozano, performed by Jorge Ramos and his ensemble; “Wild Boar's Inn” by Brandon Fiechter; “The Flight of the Bumblebee” by Nicolai Rimsky-Korsakov; "A Rainbow in Curved Air" by Terry Riley, performed by the composer; “Happy” by Pharrell Williams, and “Billo Aaj Nachna”, sung by Sardool Sikander.

Do you have a musical request? Send it to

This week’s question ... You'll have to listen to the show to participate. You have until 26 April to enter this week's quiz; the winners will be announced on the 1 May podcast. When you enter, be sure you send your postal address in with your answer, and if you have one, your RFI Listeners Club membership number.

Send your answers to:


Susan Owensby

RFI – The Sound Kitchen

80, rue Camille Desmoulins

92130 Issy-les-Moulineaux



By text … You can also send your quiz answers to The Sound Kitchen mobile phone. Dial your country’s international access code, or “ + ”, then 33 6 31 12 96 82. Don’t forget to include your mailing address in your text – and if you have one, your RFI Listeners Club membership number.

To find out how you can win a special Sound Kitchen prize, click here

To find out how you can become a member of the RFI Listeners Club, or to form your own official RFI Club, click here


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