INFORMATION and Broadcasting Services Minister Ronnie, Shikapwasha has appealed to media bodies not to demonstrate against the harassment of journalists by MMD cadres, as some politicians may take advantage and disturb the country’s peace.

The spokesperson for the media bodies Henry Kabwe, however, said journalists would proceed with their plan to petition President Rupiah Banda and would ensure that peace was not disrupted.

Lieutenant-General Shikapwasha said in an interview in Lusaka yesterday that the harassment of journalists was receiving due attention by the president and his ministry.

He said the media bodies could only send their letter of petition to the president without necessarily demonstrating.

Last week, MMD cadres beat up Times of Zambia senior reporter, Anthony Mulowa, photojournalist Richard Mulonga and Chibaula Silwamba from The Post newspapers.

“It is not necessary to demonstrate because the president has already spoken on the matter and the speaker of the National Assembly has instructed that I, as minister responsible issues a ministerial statement,” Gen Shikapwasha said.

“If journalists demonstrate, politicians and other people with wrong agendas may take advantage and cause problems,” he said.

Gen Shikapwasha said as much as it was a constitutional right for media bodies to hold peaceful demonstrations, the Government felt that an amicable solution could be found through dialogue.

“The media institutions have the right to speak out on many issues but we have to work together and find solutions to all the problems,” Gen Shikapwasha said.

On Sunday, media bodies said that they would petition President Banda on the continuous harassment of journalists by MMD cadres.

The bodies included the Media Institute of Southern Africa Zambia chapter, Press Association of Zambia, Zambia Union of Journalists and the Press Freedom Committee of The Post.

The rest are the Zambia Media Women Association , Zambia Union of Broadcasters and other Information Disseminators, PANOS Zambia and the Zambia Community Media Forum.

The organisations said they would this Friday march to State House and petition the president and ensure that action is taken against perpetrators of violence.

[Times of Zambia]

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21 COMMENTS

  1. Mr. Ronnie, please be fair enough you are a man of God let the journalists demonstrate mabe RB will act.

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  2. Ci shikapwasha iwe, please grow for once. Peaceful marching can never disturb peace. If you were a caring govt as you claim to be, you could by now have managed to bring the MMD thugs to book. But you the tendency of ciwamila galu kuluma mbuzi.

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  3. Its sad that Gen Shikapwasha sees destablization of the country in every thing people other than his MMD do. Cant he realize that the harrassment of innocent people by his cadres is more dangerous than the planned march to State Houe? Ronnie should that anti MMD groups are in the majority and its only that they are peace loving otherwise these MMD thugs could have been sorted out. There should be no stoping this peaciful demo to State House. You are the one who is misguiding RB. Just resign

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  4. It’s really a shame for a man of God to behave in such a manner …am beginning to have serious doubts mnnnnnnnnnnng…..????????????

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  5. Ronnie is not man of God, his god of man. Or trying to be the god of man. He thinks he is supreme.

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  6. Iwe ka mdala stop preserving your job as a journalists I just feel they should blacklist covering MMD & lets see what their cadres will do.

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  7. #1 Imiti ikula, you have said it all very correctly, ‘Why are MMD cadres allowed to march to state house anyhow and any time?

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  8. I don’t agree, for the first time, with bwana Ronnie. Let the people talk…let the journalists air their views!! How many MMD cadres have we submitted to the police? nada, zero, zilch, kafwako, tapali, palibe etc!!! So till the culprits are brought to book, we are to listen to the views of the scribes.

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  9. When people of opposing views to those of govt. march,ninshi its a threat to national security or might turn violent.But the actual thugs/hooligans are just let to go about their ‘trade’ in full view of even the president’s own press aide(jere),SHAME!

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  10. Why not, if the Govt has clearly shown that it is frustrating and intimidating freedom of press and Expression.This Govt has exhibited not only exhibited its ignorance and arrogance but, gross foolishness lack of direction, instilling fear in the citizen which dis agree with your cheap thinking..grow up the citizen want to show there grievance. If it was a bunch of MMD cadres coming to worship your President the doors of State House would have opened wide, you would have bought them lunch.Just listen to what the people want to say and listen good for what leadership is all about – Ichimona

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  11. Let them demonstrate. They do not necessarily have to go to State House, but let tham march. It is the nature of a democracy to be noisy. Some times differences of opinions can become hot and fights can erupt even in Parliament as often happens in Korea and India and sometimes a journalist can be fwembad. It is no big deal. A journalist is not a king. Very often cadres are also punched. Democracy is not always orderly and journalist are not the angels you want to make them..

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  12. This man ranks among the world’s dumbest politicians. He certainly was the world’s dumbest air force commander.

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  13. I don’t recall Chikapwasha advising M M D cadres not to march to State House to demonstrate for his Master Lupiya Bandit, do you?

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  14. I wounder what the system is in Zambia? politics of excahange and fightin each other is not the way t Govern the Country. if you are leaders you must be role models. just a small exmple if a soccer star is playing and he shoots off the goal post, it will be dificult for him to continue if he can pay attention to what people may talk about. so the good play goes by his wisdom to achieve his goal.
    Zambian Politics every day you hear is fighting and insults to who and why? and te same people go to church, worshop every morning and night? what is this? I not a Politicians but I love my Country Zambia , therefore always read the news and see what is going on at Home. Your feel ashamed at times when Big names are coming u what is going on in Zambia? it should not be like this. Napapatab sana

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  15. Number 7 walicenjela niwe walanda fye ifyamano. MMD’s activities should go uncovered for some time preferebly after 2011 so that they can learn a lesson. Bale bepesha na King Cobra ati ewafyongo kanshi nibena. bakabwalala. Nganali ku Z nga nalikonka ku SH naine.

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  16. 7 and 20 keep burning. Sactions could be the best treatment to heal the incorrigible MMD and its cadres. Ama guyz ama janalist they have to cover both bad and good. they are the eyes of the public. Therefore, technically anybody who provokes them offends the public. We know them cadres are conspiring plunder with the intent of disrrupting coverage by the media. Go to state house and let nobody cox you with private dialogue. The MMD bleeding cadres harrast you publically and so they deserve a public reprocation. So go guyz. We are together in spirit.

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