Special Assistant for Press and Pubic Relations George Chellah with President Sata.

By Daimone Siulapwa

It is very difficult to see how the Patriotic Front (PF) would have been able to win last year’s general elections without the support of the Post newspaper. Maybe, they would have managed in a way, seeing that the majority of Zambians in general and voters in particular, had grown increasingly disaffected with the Movement for Multi-Party Democracy (MMD)20-year- rule.

Either way, the Post did play a very pivotal role towards Michael Chilufya Sata’s decisive victory in the September 20.

It will be remembered that in the 2006 general elections, Michael Sata and the PF did stand a good chance of winning those elections; in fact, some sections of society believe that they actually won.However, the Post was not on their side then, and they eventually lost, although it must be said, by not so a big margin.

Just like in last year’s general election, Michael Sata rode on a platform of anti-China and lower taxes, two issues that endeared him well with the urban youth. But also, he promised to quash all the corruption charges that former President Frederick Chiluba was facing. This stance, some believe, helped him win votes in the Luapula province. However, his support for Chiluba did not go well with the Post, who were determined to see the former President brought to book by late President Mwanawasa for all the wrongs that he did while in power for 10 years.

In a way, the Post somehow threw their support behind Levy, and did help him to win the 2006 general elections. Following his death in 2008, and the subsequent by-election that followed, the Post seemed to be in the middle until the MMD chose its presidential candidate. Clearly, the Post were not in favour of Rupiah Banda, instead, they preferred Ng’andu Magande, then Minister of Finance.

But with Magande losing to RB, as the former president is fondly referred to, the Post was willing to give Sata some space. And to his credit, he changed his stance over Chiluba.

While RB had taken a soft stance on Chiluba, even refusing to register the London judgement and also refusing to appeal his criminal case here, Sata promised to do the exact opposite once voted into power. That earned him the support of the Post, which takes strong issue with corruption matters.

And from 2008, the Post has been with Sata, giving him unprecedented coverage wherever he went. When the PF entered into a Pact with the United Party for National Development (UPND), the Post in a systematic and sometimes obvious manner, worked to ensure that Michael Sata was President of the Pact.

When it became clear that the UPND leader Hakainde Hichilema was also interested in the Presidency of the Pact, the Post did everything to make him, and the majority of Zambians, believe and understand that the interests of the Pact were better served under the leadership of Sata.

After the pull-out of the UPND from the Pact, the Post again, did everything possible to make it known that UPND and HH were not a factor in the elections, if anything, they better accept the reality of being a junior partner.

In the end, the PF and Sata won the general elections, and subsequently formed government. Since then, the PF government has appointed a number of staff from the Post to various positions, some in the diplomatic service and others at State House.

Some of these appointments include George Chellah as the his special assistant for press and public relations, Amos Malupenga as the permanent secretary at the ministry of information, broadcasting and tourism, Eddie Mwanaleza, chief photographer State House, Thomas Nsama, photographer, State House while others like Joe Kaunda, Chibaulwa Silwamba, Patson Chilemba, Chansa Kabwela and Yvonne Shibemba among others have been appointed to the diplomatic service. Word has it that more are likely to be appointed.

Now, these appointments are understandable, President Sata is not only showing appreciation, but is also being seen to show real appreciation to the Post for the wonderful work they did on his behalf, to ensure that he ascended to the highest office in the land.

With the kind of coverage that was seen from the public media, particularly the Zambia Daily Mail, Times of Zambia and the state broadcaster, the Zambia National Broadcasting Corporation (ZNBC), Sata and the PF would have had difficulties winning the elections without the tacit support of the Post.

It is with background that the appointments are somehow justified. But then, by the Post allowing such senior and experienced personnel to leave, are they not risking it too much? Is this not a brain drain to the Post? Is the Post going to successfully fill-up the spaces left by these experienced members of staff?

This is of concern to us readers of the Post, particularly those of us who appreciate and understand where we are coming. We do appreciate the role that the Post has played for two decades in advancing our democracy. And precisely because of that, we do not want a situation where it runs itself in a ditch, by retaining only staff that may not be able to live up to the high standards that have been set.

Of course, one ought to realise that an organisation cannot entirely depend on one person or a selected few. If anything, the Post has in the past lost some valuable journalists such as Bright Mwape, undoubtedly, one of their brightest reporters in the two decades that they have been running.

That said, one would want the Post to retain some formidable reporters. If anything, every newspaper goes for the best in the industry, and always fights to keep its best reporters and editors. If it means promoting or improving their conditions of service, then be it. Or if it means poaching, then also be it.

As a keen follower and reader of the Post since its inception, I would want to see it retain the best that there is in the industry so that it can continue playing its role of a watchdog with very sharp teeth!

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80 COMMENTS

  1. Explains why the Post has become stale. They cannot even revamp their online website. We hope it will start to dig deeper as it did. Worse of our Zambian Online Media is that they never write well about our country but encourage hate and are seen to encourage negativity. Alas that we have Good Activities that never get reported for people in Diaspora to get encourages. Media? You are the tool and our eyes that can help us see Good of our Country. LT, Post, Watchdog BE POSITIVE & HELP US MARKET ZAMBIA???

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  2. We need the post to be back with the people as watchdogs, fred need to relook at this whole new set up of the post so that a new baby is born….

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  3. The reality is that there was a paradigm shift within Post newspapers. It follows therefore that it will never re-acquire its former position of ‘the paper that digs deeper’. It lost its salt and that’s now history. It now digs selectively.

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  4. Very good and ubiased analysis. However, read this: ‘Some of these appointments include George Chellah as the his special assistant for press and public relations, Amos Malupenga as the permanent secretary at the ministry of information, broadcasting and tourism, Eddie Mwanaleza, chief photographer State House, Thomas Nsama, photographer, State House while others like Joe Kaunda, Chibaulwa Silwamba, Patson Chilemba, Chansa Kabwela and Yvonne Shibemba among others have been appointed to the diplomatic service. Word has it that more are likely to be appointed” Isnt this a form of corruption closely linked ‘nepotism’?

    Would the Post have kept silent on this if this was done to another paper, say, the Monitor?
    Finally, the Post has taken a big risk by allowing this. Its compromised.

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  5. we are in post elections so its the post issue, so let not talk about post issues, instead write and talk about progressive issues happening right now in Zambia. we need progress and development moving forward and not talk about post elections.MMD lost anyway, suck it up and move on people.

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  6. Post no longer inspiring as before.Maybe this Mmembe guy is truly a satanist like we were informed by chanda chiimba 111.he’s spreading hate and falsehood in the country.unfortunately we alot of blind followers in this nation who can’t see that the post has totally changed from a good paper to shit paper.they deliberately remain mute on the wrongs that are being committed by govt and support every wrong pronouncement by govt.trying very hard to usher in one party state by helping to kill all opposition.they are a threat to peace and stability of our beloved nation zambia! Whatever the intentions of the Post,God cancel the plans of the devil,in Jesus’ name.amen.

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  7. It tells you what motivated Fred Mmembe. Don’t tell Mmembe didn’t rake in millions of dollars in exchange for his role in Sata’s victory. He may not have been rewarded with a position. But you wouldn’t be too far from the truth to suggest the man walked away with a bounty. In hindsight, Fred is a bounty hunter, and he is as corrupt as Sata himself.

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  8. I find it very hard reading the article, pardon my ignorance or ‘show off you may call it’ I do not dislike the writer but his grammatical construction of English is sub standard at best

    Thanks

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    • hmmm mushota, i was even waiting for non-intellectual analysis as always but bosting to another level

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    • Sorry sir, you might have been reading the article starting from the bottom going up. Start with the first word on top going down after clearing your head

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    • “Those who live in glass houses should not throw stones”. Just read your sentence again. Very poor syntax and punctuation. Its not even Grade 7 standard. Write something that makes sense before you criticise others.

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  9. This underlines the nichekeleko culture that defines Zambian life. All this anti-corruption efforts are a sham. You will wake up one day and find out the country is broke.

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  10. The Post are not dumb and stupid. What is happening at the post will only strengthen and make the stronger

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    • What gist? This is a pointless article based on wrong assumptions. No amount of labelling it the gospel truth will make me chage my mind.

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  11. MMD tried ZNBC, Daily Mail, ZNBC……….Chimba Chinda III did it win? Can we conclude that the man in Lundazi, Shangombo, far flund of Luapaula does he read the Post News Paper? Is it worth to conclude that PF won because of the Post News Paper?

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  12. #
    14
    Madea
    No qualification is needed. To win the heart of the president and get a white colar job is to pull in the same direction with him, you will be rewarded at the end of the game.

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  13. This article is very shallow (like the thief of an author). The superficial analysis based on the wrong assumption that knowledge and common sense are only reserved for a few people.

    The second wrong assumption is that the Post is partisan. The Post comdemns any one who they percieve is wrong regardless of party affiliation.

    I am not surprised at this very poor level of analysis. Entirely consistent with opportunists and scavengers like Suilapwa

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  14. This Mmembe is even quoting the bible wrongly in his editorials trying to blindfold the readers yet he is at the helm of corruption.he wants us people to believe that this country is being run on ten commandments.i wonder whose commandments.?

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  15. The author is very right, we need the post to be what it used to be, working with the people, am suer meembe has a plan he better have because we need those checks and balances now than before.. And some one must tell this mushota to get a life… We zambia we buy the post everyday abd we can tell the difference.. Sam mujuda has aslo been appointed ambassodor to namibia

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  16. Post has become irrelevant due to it’s biased stance. We seem to have people who are incredibly unethical, selfish with no regards to the sufferings of others. Zambian people have been taken for granted for their none confrontational stance to abuses of public resources. The Post seem to embrace politics of insults and hate. They have hand picked a political party, taken sides and now feel they can walk on water. Even the untouchable media guru Rupert Murdoch is learning a thing or two for breaking the media ethical code of conduct. Politics of deception are becoming a thing of the past so even if you advise the president on how to win the next election by realigning our boundaries, the Zambian people will have the last say. 

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  17. My brother, there is nothing tangible we can talk about the Post now. It is toothless, a sinking titanic, a compromised tabloid, a PF vuvuzela. Honestly, how can they (the Post) criticize the hand that giveth, the master who gives them jobs? Shame on the Post and the *****IC Mmembe! You have lost the dignity that you had before.

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  18. Theses were jst employees who can’t turn a blind eye to greener pastures.unless u are saying they pay comrade fred to be employd.moreso take time to check pipoz origin b4 u embroil yr self into these tribal things of yrs.can u refuse an appointment which u qualify?

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  19. If baffles me when people state that the support of Chiluba won votes for Sata. A thief is a thief; and there are many people from that noble province of Luapula who felt ashamed of Chiluba. What ever he looted, only Regina and her relatives may have benefited. For me the analysis is not as good as it should have been.

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  20. It is unfortunate that the Post has become another vuvuzela for the government. Frankly, there is currently no difference between the Post and state media like the Zambia Daily Mail, Times of Zambia and ZNBC. Unless drastic action is taken, the Post is destined for the graveyard.

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  21. This article is some kind of a confused running commentary based on the authors ‘not-so-clever’ observations.

    Unfortunately he does not bother to asess the POST if it has new employees who have replaced those sent to the govt.

    I use the word ‘sent’ because all the govt appointments from the POST were all planned by Sata and Mmembe when you and I were still chanting ‘donchi kubeba’

    The POST has moved from its core business of publishing to a political party (PF) publishing press. POST’s survival is ,from now on, inextricable from that of PF.

    When PF is out of power, POST will file for bunkrupcy as ther original business has been replaced with chronically loss making PF propaganda. They are funded by govt just like Times or Daily Mail.

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  22. Good evening

    I used to like reading the Post sometime back, especially the editorial comment because I could see that they were fighting for a better, transparent Zambia by removing the veil of ignorance and exposing many injustices and other corrupt acts in our country.

    However, somewhere along the line, I found it hard to seperate the rumours from the facts and to establish what was real from what was fake. I think this is what bloggers mean when they say the paper has become stale. I am personally thankful to the folks who run these information sites and though it may be difficult sometimes, I sincerely hope they don’t lose their grip on professional journalism and continue to give us a comprehensive, non-partisan analysis of the status quo.

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  23. If I recall correctly, Sata’s position on Chiluba started changing when the London High Court verdict came out. Clearly, Levy was still alive and in power then. He was quoted as saying that he would have to re-evaluate his stand on Chiluba given the verdict.

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  24. Politics in Zambia are now a matter of life and death.Post newspaper accomplished what they were fighting for in the name of “voice of the voiceless”,infiltration and control of government.Their next mission is to destroy who ever is not on the side of their ideologies

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  25. I was hoping to see the picture of the beautiful lady when I clicked on this story. Who gives a dam.n about the Post? 

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  26. Of all legacies that are canted by regimes in our country, though the hypocrisy of this regime may be the worst, the relentless criticism of these hypocrites should be the most tormenting. We are not omniscient, but well informed and truth will be on the side of ordinary Zambians at last.

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  27. Sialupwa I hope you will apply for a job at The Post, a lot of jobs available now. It is better you get a real job and stop swindling people.

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  28. I agree with the writer though he is pulling the punches. I think there were too many appointments in one organisation. Something is wrong there, its not normal.

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  29. Off course Fred mmembe is the defecto President of the Republic of Zambia. Sata is just there to be the face while Mmembe and his boys rule. But they should be careful with the way they run government as one day they may end up righting articles their behind bars.

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  30. The Post has always survived as an alternative to the government owned media. That is their selling point. Being a commercial newspaper, it has to adopt a different platform from what is now PF media otherwise it will be dead. Its a matter of time before it begins fighting with PF and MCS because thats the only way it will sell. It wont sell by preaching the same message as Times of Zambia and Zambia Daily Mail. It doesnt matter how many ex-employees go into government, the Post can only survive by being an alternative. This honeymoon will end and very quickly. Watch this space. Mmembe is no fool and he knows what it takes to survive.

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  31. Blind followers indeed zambians. The Post has not done any justine. So wrong things justified the the paper these days. God help us.

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  32. So many wrong things justified by the paper these days. Is the Post another wing of governemnt? Someone Inlighten me.

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  33. The post needs to take a real seriose sel audit. Its lost its objectivity and fragrance. Its appeal is in tatters. Its style of targeting individuals at all cost makes its reading a real challenge to an objectivity hunter, and gives endless nightmares to a lecturer of journalism.

    OH POST, WHERE IS YOUR STING? WHERE IS YOUR DANCE? Didnt you STING LIKE A BEE and DANCE LIKE A BUTTERFLY?
    Now you are a defender of one ethnicity and an enemy of another. You have got it wrong Mmembe.

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  34. Sata said that he will not stand in 2016. Half of the post is in govt and OP. Watch this carefully. This satanist fred meembe will appear in 2016 to rule God forbid

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  35. You HH chaps, are you still crying over your lost opportunity to be Sata’s vice President? It is no time for that now. You lost your opportunity and this time is about bringing developments in the country. Start organizing your Kantemba party for 2016 rather than dweling on the past. PF is gaining grounds locally and internationally . There is nothing wrong in rewarding those who helped him win the election and mind you, Zambia is better than now with Michael Sata as a president than ten HH put together. PF go forward and we don’t want distructors in this match. Viva Chipolopolo boys and viva Donchi kubeba.

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  36. What an article! Erect but no penetration. Sounds more like a job application to Mmembe from Bo Siulapwa.

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  37. Mmembe is a liar and a time-waster. He is actually a crook and a liability to our Zambian nation. He wants the whole nation to chase the wind at the expense of Bringing development in our country by crowding our minds with lies and witch hunts so that his paper keeps selling. Please Zambians read between lines, Mbembe is an alarmist and doesn’t want Zambia to grow, hence all this negative reporting over the years.

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  38. Sialupwa has got it all wrong. What he should realise is that there were three arms of government until September 2011 when a fourth and more superior force imposed itself on government. The Post and mmembe are now the first arm of government followed by Cabinet, Legislature and Judiciary in that order. It certainly is more powerful than cabinet, legislature is a bit beyond their control because of its diversity, as for the Judiciary ask one Sebastian Size Zulu how mmembe cut him to size and never to open his mouth defending the judiciary ever again.

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  39. the post is at the centre of new potical game in this country. Only one of the two will eventually happen i.e. either the post will be ruling us indirectly using PF or the post will loss out as people come to appreciate for what they are and the agenda they have on the back of thier mind or his mind hate for others through promotion of tribalism and regionism. M’membe some day and some day soon you will learn what you are doing to this nation. M’membe has the information access control now, state house as his extension, DPP’s office under his wings the beuty is that all things come to an end at some point. Thank God you made things that way

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  40. The appointments are not only meant to appreciate The Post but are also meant to weaken them that’s why Sata has sent some of them in foreign services so that they are not in touch. If you are the press assistant to the president you have no choice but to be royal to Sata especially knowing his personality and prefer to dissapoint Mmembe instead.In short,Sata has turned Mmembe’s best friends against him.

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  41. I was not so fond of chanda chimba the 111, But after these appointments i remember his analysis of these guys being after state machinary which he rightly observed as things stand. So i wish I had WATCHED more of his programs coz i think the chap was right.In 5 years time he wil be a hero 4 his predictions as more drama stil unfolds.

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  42. The Chanda Chimba programs were not fabrications but based on FACT. he argued with motion picture evidence accompanied by SOUND.
    Our HERO CHanda CHiumba we owe you an APPOLOGY AS A NATION

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  43. The Post lied during the campaigns and they cannot lie anymore. This is their end. If you look at the names that have left the Post, they all speak Tonga. No wonder Sata was a hero. Anyway the only way for the Post is down the drain. Am in the UK I have never seen a managing editor at one paper for more than 10years. Mmembe has been at the Post for more than 20years, actully since inception. No more new ideas!!! They have all run to join the government to steal. The Post is bankrupt. All financial ratios are negative. Workers are not paid.

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  44. The bulk of the Post’s news was MMD-bashing articles. Now that MMD is no more, they have no content. 
    Let them focus on entertainment and clubbing news. They used to have an excellent Friday Post with a lively “What’s Hot” section. Now they are stale and not worth the paper it is printed on.
    They can re-vamp their online paper as well and have a better blog section — like LT :)

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  45. Very un baised aticle indeed. The Post and M’embe have really disaapointed us. Their hatrate for HH have made the literally cardres of PF..just to try and make HH irrelevant. But wait a minute , we read thru their paper everyday and we know what they stand for. Imagine if these appointments were made from Times or other papers!!!! God will deliver Zambia one day.

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  46. The post needs a serious competititor. I dont buy it ever since business post on Tuesday was discontinued.

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