President Hakainde Hichilema has challenged the media fraternity in the country to regulate itself. President Hichilema encouraged the media to take advantage of the conducive environment created by the government by embracing self-regulation.
Mr Hichilema said this during the press conference held at state house yesterday in Lusaka, which has been held exactly eight months after assuming office as Head of State.
“We are thankful to the media and I hope that the media will take advantage of the self-regulation opportunity that we are offering,” he urged.
President Hichilema advised the media to get organized and seize the opportunity to regulate its conduct.
“Take advantage of self-regulation, it’s a side issue, comment on, organize yourselves, I am encouraging you,” he said.
He cautioned the media to refrain from publishing falsehoods as it has the potential to incite confusion.
President’s remarks follow a story published as a lead in one of the media alleging that He met Judges at the state house.
Mr Hichilema wondered why the formal media went ahead to publish falsehoods made by Patriotic Front Chairman for Information and Publicity Raphael Nakacinda.
The Head of State implored the media during his address to work closely with the government in curbing the spreading of falsehoods.
President Hichilema has since warned people in a habit of propelling falsehoods to desist or risk facing the long arm of the law.
Mr Hichilema said those who will come in conflict with the law should not complain when they are picked by law enforcement wings.
“We must work together to curb the issue, you are breaking the law when you misinform the nation, don’t complain when the law enforcement officers pick you. Because you are breaking the law,” he warned.
He explained that it is illegal in the Zambian statute for one to misinform or tell lies.
He urged the media to verify information before publishing articles so that falsehoods are not published as lead stories.