Biased reporting by the Public media

We wish to express our deep disappointed with the manner in which media houses have conducted themselves in the run-up to the 2015 presidential election.
While there has been great effort by the private media to offer balanced and credible reporting of the events surrounding election coverage, we observe serious levels of biased reporting and conduct towards the ruling Patriotic Front, especially by the public media.

We insist, as the Press Association of Zambia (PAZA) that public media houses have an obligation to remain resolute in protecting the credibility of the elections by operating above board.

We are particularly and specifically concerned with the conduct of the Zambia National Broadcasting Corporation (ZNBC)’s conduct to stop the coverage of the live presidential debate.ZNBC, during its 19hours news bulletin of Tuesday, December 29, 2014 did announce that the debate would be televised soon after the recording. Later, we learnt about the cancellation without reasons. It is our submission that ZNBC must clear the air on this matter.

We do not think that such an action should go unchallenged. PAZA however wishes to acknowledge the efforts before the election campaigns when opposition leaders received fair coverage on ZNBC television and radio and we have not seen any reason why this fairness should be suspended during election campaigns.

the public print media have continued offering pictures of crowds of the PF presidential candidate at rallies on the front pages of their newspapers, which action is never extended to the opposition political parties

 

We wish to state that the conduct of the media in general should be above board in order to protect the credibility of the election. In the absence of professional conduct, losing candidates in the election could use them as grounds to petition the election outcomes and bring shame on the media. This would be very disappointing to say the least.

ZNBC was in fact one of the institutions censured by the Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ) as offering biased news during the coverage of the elections. We are in agreement with ECZ and wish to join them in urging ZNBC to stop the bias with immediate effect.Further we feel duty-bound to make mention of the ECZ observations that the conduct of the Zambia News and Information Services (ZANIS) to provide public address system to Patriotic Front (PF) candidate Hon Edgar Lungu during the filing of nominations and refused to do the same to other candidates is utter unprofessional and should not be allowed. As such, we propose the following to the two institutions:

  1. That they should take steps to immediately stop the biased conduct and reporting of the election campaigns.
  2. Make the necessary measures to provide the same or similar amount of coverage to the opposition political parties to achieve belated balance within reasonable time before elections.
  3. That if this is not tenable, the heads of the two institutions should stand aside until the elections are held in order to protect their personal standing in society and also stem growing fears that the conduct of the elections stand distorted as a result of the unfair conducts of the institutions they lead.

For us, allegations that the managements of the public media receives instructions from PF officials are not enough to make them biased. We say this because ZNBC is on record as having resisted these instructions which earned them due respect and public support.We have also noted with growing concern that the public print media have continued offering pictures of crowds of the PF presidential candidate at rallies on the front pages of their newspapers, which action is never extended to the opposition political parties.

It must be noted that showing a crown of one candidate on the front pages and denying competitors of the same, works to influence would-be voters in favour of such a candidate, in this case, Hon Edgar Lungu, the PF candidate.
We challenge Hon Lungu to demonstrate magnanimity and fire his officials for acting illegally by instructing media houses. Being candidate of a ruling party, Zambians expect Hon Lungu to offer leadership in matters like these because it his ascendancy to power through such manipulation of the public media that will be threatened. There is still time for Hon Lungu to act correct by firing these people and protect the credibility of the election.
As such, we are urging the Zambia Daily Mail and the Times of Zambia to take corrective measures and allow the citizens to judge them fairly.
We however, wish to take note of the efforts to cover opposition leaders (without showing their crowds) but we propose that efforts must be extended to offer equal or fair treatment of election news.
Patson Phiri
Executive Secretary
PRESS ASSOCIATION OF ZAMBIA

[Read 12 times, 1 reads today]
Loading...

25 COMMENTS

  1. This is Edgar Kaminamisa Lungu at work. Desperation is leading him to such treacherous acts. He cannot be trusted.

    0

    0
    • First he forces his PF presidency on people by ferrying his own delegates to the convention while terrorizing other candidates supporters. This clearly reported in all newspapers. He dribbles Miles Sampa by having Chibesakunda influence the compromised High Court judges not hear Sampa’s case, tries to impeach Guy Scott, then finally running to the Nigerians for campaign funding in exchange for government contracts.

      Is this the best we can do as Zambians? What a useless incredible candidate

      0

      0
    • Nigerians have been offered mineral rights, oil and gas exploration concessions and access to maize exports from the FRA in exchange for campaign funding. This has been engineered by Kaminamisa Lungu’s new found friend RB

      0

      0
    • In Civilized nations, the organizers of the Debate would have just put an empty chair in place of Edgar Lungu and fired questions at it and made fun of it. The Debate would have rolled on and Lungu would have been the looser for it. That is what they should do next time. HH don’t worry about the presence of Lungu, you can still debate him even in his absentia, the important thing is wide media coverage. Next time, both Muvi and ZNBC should cover it and it should be live on TV to avoid editing.

      0

      0
    • Saki refuses to rejoin UPND

      By Lambwe Kachali

      Thursday June 19, 2008 [04:00]

      UNITED Liberal Party (ULP) president Sakwiba Sikota yesterday said UPND president Hakainde Hichilema is not honest in his offer of reconciliation because he has failed to deal with tribalism in the party. Responding to Hichilema who on Tuesday invited him to rejoin UPND in the spirit of national unity and development, Sikota said Hichilema’s offer to the leadership and membership of ULP to rejoin UPND was not genuine and was laced with thorny issues.

      Sikota accused Hichilema of playing to the gallery by using the press without apologising to the people that suffered at the 2006 UPND convention and those who were still affected by the alleged tribalism in the party. He said if Hichilema really wanted…

      0

      0
  2. Take it to my lady Ireen Mambilima, she who solveth all.

    We know not to trust ZNBC for neutral coverage.

    Shame on ZNBC and whoever is at the helm. Shame!

    0

    0
    • Ireen Mambilima is very credible and stood her ground against RB in the last elections. She should replace the compromised Chibesakunda as Chief Justice

      0

      0
    • I am picturing lady liberty tilted to one side with mini Minister of Injustice muzzling a reporter with one hand while holding a thumbs up to the judge. I know you hear his words.

      “I didn’t have time to arrange anything. I was in Nigeria stuffing my pockets.”

      0

      0
    • Saki refuses to rejoin UPND

      By Lambwe Kachali

      Thursday June 19, 2008 [04:00]

      UNITED Liberal Party (ULP) president Sakwiba Sikota yesterday said UPND president Hakainde Hichilema is not honest in his offer of reconciliation because he has failed to deal with tribalism in the party. Responding to Hichilema who on Tuesday invited him to rejoin UPND in the spirit of national unity and development, Sikota said Hichilema’s offer to the leadership and membership of ULP to rejoin UPND was not genuine and was laced with thorny issues.

      Sikota accused Hichilema of playing to the gallery by using the press without apologising to the people that suffered at the 2006 UPND convention and those who were still affected by the alleged tribalism in the party. He said if Hichilema really wanted…

      0

      0
  3. The best and first course of action is for the winning opposition party to fire heads of ZNBC and ZANIS. Pure and simple

    0

    0
  4. A Phiri stop speaking nonsense There has been great effort by the private media to offer balanced and credible reporting of the events surrounding election coverage??? PAZA needs glasses so they can read The private media is as biased as the state media. in other words, the journalism profession is dead. Replaced by propaganda. Politicians use the media for their own purposes

    0

    0
  5. How can ka Lungu debate? In mono-syllables? I have heard some incoherent bástards in my time but ka Lungu takes the cake.

    0

    0
  6. Am equally disappointed with the so called PAZA why are you acting when things favored PF you are also biased. Most of the private media they are against PF even the way they are reporting you can see that they are biased and giving people false information one of them ZWD but to you that is ok. We used to get balanced news from Muvi TV but now they have shifted . Now the only news you can get from MuviTV is UPND news if you hear about PF is the negative things which . We dont have credible media in Zambia and it is dangerous

    0

    0
    • Dude, you must have been a special one in class. The private media can be as biased as they want because, guess what, they are privately funded! ZNBC is a public institution and does not belong to the PF. If you want it to be biased, privatise it so that only you PF wankers can be sponsoring it. As long as it keeps taking public money, ZNBC has a responsibility to serve the public interest. If PF wants, it can set up its own private network to sing daily praises, but the public media should be off limits!

      0

      0
  7. We are praying that no crook or chakolwa will rule Zambia ever. Please UPND sue ZNBC, Times of Zambia and Daily Mail. Dr Scott where is yo leadership please stop these crooks in PF from abusing public media. Where is the UPND legal team. Fight and fight and fight these injustices now, then will you manage to stop the rigging by these thieves and crooks.

    0

    0
    • Saki refuses to rejoin UPND

      By Lambwe Kachali

      Thursday June 19, 2008 [04:00]

      UNITED Liberal Party (ULP) president Sakwiba Sikota yesterday said UPND president Hakainde Hichilema is not honest in his offer of reconciliation because he has failed to deal with tribalism in the party. Responding to Hichilema who on Tuesday invited him to rejoin UPND in the spirit of national unity and development, Sikota said Hichilema’s offer to the leadership and membership of ULP to rejoin UPND was not genuine and was laced with thorny issues.

      Sikota accused Hichilema of playing to the gallery by using the press without apologising to the people that suffered at the 2006 UPND convention and those who were still affected by the alleged tribalism in the party. He said if Hichilema really wanted…

      0

      0
  8. In Zambia when one applies to aspire for a political office they are asked to resign from Civil Service. Lungu is not leading by example by holding on to 2 ministerial jobs yet applied and filed nominations for the presidency.

    0

    0
    • WHEN LUNGU RESIGNS FROM THE TWO PORTFOLIOS WHO DO YOU THINK WILL ACT IN THOSE POSITIONS? YOUR DULL FATHER? THE CONSTITUTION OF ZAMBIA DOES NOT SAY ANY THING ABOUT A CABINET MINISTER RESIGNING HIS POSITION, IF HE STANDS AS PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE. DEAL WITH IT .
      EL WILL BE 2 CABINET MINISTERS UNTIL HE MOVES TO STATE HOUSE
      EL FOR PRESIDENT

      0

      0
    • Saki refuses to rejoin UPND

      By Lambwe Kachali

      Thursday June 19, 2008 [04:00]

      UNITED Liberal Party (ULP) president Sakwiba Sikota yesterday said UPND president Hakainde Hichilema is not honest in his offer of reconciliation because he has failed to deal with tribalism in the party. Responding to Hichilema who on Tuesday invited him to rejoin UPND in the spirit of national unity and development, Sikota said Hichilema’s offer to the leadership and membership of ULP to rejoin UPND was not genuine and was laced with thorny issues.

      Sikota accused Hichilema of playing to the gallery by using the press without apologising to the people that suffered at the 2006 UPND convention and those who were still affected by the alleged tribalism in the party. He said if Hichilema really wanted…

      0

      0
  9. Kachasu Man or Chibuku Warrior has ran out of gas and these are desperate measures as the time approaches. I for one cannot stand a drunk and an alcoholic because they are unpredictable. Surely we can’t have such a candidate as our president. So far everything he’s done is wishy-washy and has no credibility. Even his own people from his party are voting for HH so what does this tell us? Look at what they did to Miles Sampa and what they did to poor Guy Scott? Chaos in their own party now imagine the chaos when this guy and his counterparts or what remains of them come into power? It will not be One Zambia-One Nation but “Their Zambia-Their Nation!” Please Zambian’s there is not enough time and we urge you to vote wisely. HH will move Zambia forward and help us compete on the global…

    0

    0
    • Saki refuses to rejoin UPND

      By Lambwe Kachali

      Thursday June 19, 2008 [04:00]

      UNITED Liberal Party (ULP) president Sakwiba Sikota yesterday said UPND president Hakainde Hichilema is not honest in his offer of reconciliation because he has failed to deal with tribalism in the party. Responding to Hichilema who on Tuesday invited him to rejoin UPND in the spirit of national unity and development, Sikota said Hichilema’s offer to the leadership and membership of ULP to rejoin UPND was not genuine and was laced with thorny issues.

      Sikota accused Hichilema of playing to the gallery by using the press without apologising to the people that suffered at the 2006 UPND convention and those who were still affected by the alleged tribalism in the party. He said if Hichilema really wanted…

      0

      0

Comments are closed.