PRESIDENT Edgar Lungu says it is disheartening to see or hear of journalists being paid by sources to do their work.
Speaking at the Press Freedom Day Celebrations at Freedom Statue in Lusaka, President Lungu has condemned the culture of receiving tips popularly known ‘blalizo’ from sources.
“The culture of blalizo is yet another scar on Zambian journalism. yes, times are hard, but it is disheartening to see or hear of journalists being paid by sources to do their work. In other cases, we hear of owners of media underpaying journalists and expecting them to be paid by sources! what do you expect of such journalists. It even sends a chill in one’s spine to imagine this going on as we approach the general elections,” President Lungu said.
He further said the harassment of journalists is unacceptable.
The President has since urged the police command to up their game and protect all law-abiding citizens from harassment and violence.
“One critical role that journalists play is providing people with the information they need to be free and self-governing. this is why the practitioners must present the news in a way that is comprehensive and proportional. And I say this because we have seen in our country, journalists dictating what people should know. no! there is no room for slanting news or exaggerating news in professional journalism. it is what it is! journalism’s first obligation is truth. but journalists can only report truthfully if they do thorough investigations and talk to all sides of the story,” he said.
And the President says it is disconcerting that some owners of newspapers have suddenly become politicians and are using their publications to spew out their manifestos while attacking their rivals.
“It is bad enough to have a media house owned by an individual who openly support one candidate but it is dangerous to the nation to have a presidential candidate owning a media house for purposes of running for president. They will not just use their publication for propaganda, but they will ruin the careers of their journalists whose credibility will be questioned,” he said.
PF withdraws adoption certificate from Dorothy Nachilongo
THE ruling Patriotic Front (PF) party has with immediate effect withdrawn its adoption certificate from Dorothy Nachilongo who had earlier been adopted to contest the forthcoming Chifubu Parliamentary elections on the party ticket.
The party has instead adopted Kondwani Winga popularly known as ‘major’ to contest the Chifubu parliamentary elections.
Secretary general, Davies Mwila said in a statement that the changes have beennecessitated by some consequential information and developments that have come to the attention of the party’s Central Committee concerning the candidature of Ms Nachilongo.
“I am hereby directing all our Party structures in Chifubu Constituency and the Copperbelt Province to support and work with Mr. Kondwani Winga and ensure that we maximise the Presidential Vote,” he said.
Yesterday, some residents in Chifubu Township protested against the candidature of Ms Nachilongo.
Adoption of visually impaired candidate, Dr. Thomas Mtonga, elates BSLT
BORN Short Living Tall (BSLT) Zambia has welcomed the adoption of Thomas Mtonga, a visually impaired person to stand as Patriotic Front (PF) candidate for Chasefu constituency in the Eastern province during the forthcoming General Elections.
BSLT executive director Ntalasha Chisha said the adoption of Mr Mtonga, a lecturer at the University of Zambia gives hope to the cries of differently-abled persons.
He further said the adoption is a victory for differently-abled not only in Chasefu but elsewhere.
“We are calling on the people of Chasefu to rally behind him not because of his physical appearance but because he is a human being like any other who can represent the people and deliver,” Mr Chisha.
He also congratulated the PF for showing a great example to all political parties by choosing Mr Mtonga, the organization feel will be a great voice for the masses of differently-abled persons once elected in Parliament.
Mr Chisha further said his organization will pay nomination fees to adopted persons living with disabilities as a way of showing them support as it wants issues affecting differently-abled persons being represented by the affected persons themselves.
“Mr Mtonga’s adoption is indeed a game changer and we wish him all the very best in his campaigns,” he said.
The Body of late H.E. Dr. Joseph Chilengi, Zambian ambassador to Turkey returns home today
THE body of late Ambassador of the Republic of Zambia to the Republic of Turkey, Joseph Chilengi, will arrive in Lusaka today at Kenneth Kaunda International Airport aboard a Turkish Military Aircraft at 20:30 hours.
According to a statement issued, Secretary to the Cabinet Dr Simon Miti said President Edgar Lungu has since accorded Dr Chilengi an official funeral.
He said the burial will take place on Monday May 17 at Leopards Hill Memorial Park in Lusaka preceded by a funeral church service at Miracle Life Church in Roma Township off Zambezi Road at 10:00 hours.
Dr Miti said President Lungu has to the effect declared Monday a day of national mourning in honor of Ambassador Chilengi.
“During the period of national mourning all flags will fly at half-mast while activities of entertainment in nature should be suspended from 06:00 hours to 18:00 hours.
Members of the public are further advised that in line with the public health guidelines on preventing the further spread of Covid-19 at public gatherings, attendance at the Official Funeral Church Service and burial at the Leopards Hill Memorial Park has been restricted to 250 invited family members and representatives of the Government,” he said.
Ambassador Chilengi died on Tuesday 11th May, 2021 at Güven Hospital in Ankara where he was receiving medical attention.
(Picture by Ministry of Foreign Affairs)