Tuesday, June 18, 2024

MISA Zambia condemns the beating up of journalist by UPND cadres

Share

MISA Zambia has condemned the beating up of journalist Lovemore Phiri of Pasme FM in Petauke, Eastern Province by UPND cadres during his breakfast radio programme where callers were calling in on the topic of fertilisers distribution.

The attack on Phiri occurred in the early hours of Friday, 4th November, 2022 by suspected UPND cadres who stormed PASME radio and interrupted a live programme that was discussing farmers preparedness for the 2022/23 farming season.

MISA Zambia Chairperson Fr. Barnabas Simatende, OMI said the media body is concerned by violent acts against journalists and called upon Zambians to condemn the attack on Phiri.

“MISA Zambia condemns the attacks on PASME Radio station in Petauke District of Eastern Province by suspected United Party for National Development (UPND) Cadres.The cadres who forced their way into the on-air studio beat up Mr Lovemore Phiri, who happens to be a reporter and presenter at the radio station and further, caused damages to the studio equipment, resulting in the radio station going off-air.As if that was not enough, around 08:15hrs another group of suspected UPND cadres drove into the radio station and chased after Mr. Phiri who had to run away upon seeing the vehicle driving into the radio station premises. The cadres managed to catch Mr. Phiri in a nearby neighborhood attacked him physically and threatened to kill him. Mr. Phiri, was rescued by members of the community who ran to the scene,” Fr. Simatende said.

“MISA Zambia is deeply concerned by these acts and calls upon all well-meaning Zambian to condemn them. These acts do not only pose a threat to media freedom and freedom of expression in the country but are a danger to our democracy. The acts are also an attack to the Head of State who has shown commitment towards the enjoyment of fundamental freedoms of expression and the media. We wish to express our disappointment with the UPND in Petauke District for beating up an unarmed presenter and causing damage to the radio station which provides people of Petauke with a platform to exercise their democratic right to freedom of expression. We wish to remind the UPND that media freedom and freedom of expression is a constitutional right that should be enjoyed by every Zambian. The UPND cadres are out of order and their actions should not be tolerated any further,” he said.

Fr. Simatende said Republican President Hakainde Hichilema and the UPND leadership must discipline the suspects in question as their actions do not reflect the true reason why Zambians voted for UPND.

“We further commend the members of the community for coming to the rescue of Mr. Phiri and ensuring that his life is protected. We call upon all Zambians not to relent but to continue fighting for their democratic right of freedom of expression and for the media to operate in a friendly environment. We would like to bring this matter to the attention of the Republican President and the UPND leadership to discipline the suspects in question as their actions do not reflect the true reason why Zambians voted for them,” Fr. Simatende.

Meanwhile, President of the Socialist Party Fred M’membe has charged that under President Hakainde Hichilema’s watch threats of violence and attacks against journalists by UPND cadres are not properly investigated or prosecuted.

“Today journalist Lovemore Phiri of Pasme FM in Petauke was beaten up by UPND cadres during his breakfast radio programme where callers were calling in on the topic of fertilisers distribution. His UPND attackers are known but no arrests have been made. We need to counter threats of violence and crimes against journalists to protect freedom of expression for all. Ending impunity for crimes against journalists is one of the most pressing issues to guarantee freedom of expression and access to information for all citizens. We mustn’t allow journalists to be beaten for reporting the news and bringing information to the public. And those who attack, assault journalists must not go unpunished. Impunity leads to more attacks and is often a symptom of worsening lawlessness and the breakdown of law. Threats of violence and attacks against journalists, in particular, create a climate of fear for media professionals, impeding the free circulation of information, opinions and ideas for all citizens,” Dr. M’membe stated.

Dr. M’membe has since urged all Zambians of goodwill to rise, reject and denounce the growing UPND violence against journalists.

“Under Mr Hakainde Hichilema’s watch threats of violence and attacks against journalists by UPND cadres are not properly investigated or prosecuted. This impunity emboldens the perpetrators of the crimes and at the same time has a chilling effect on society, including journalists themselves. We are concerned that this impunity damages the whole nation by covering up serious human rights abuses, corruption, and crime. We urge all Zambians of goodwill to rise and reject, denounce this growing UPND violence against journalists. This will send a powerful message that the nation will not tolerate attacks against journalists and against the right to freedom of expression for all. Only free journalists can be the vigilant watchdogs of the public interest against the temptation on the part of those who wield it to abuse that power,” Dr. M’membe said.

43 COMMENTS

  1. And Mr HH will not condemn this.
    All he will say is WE IN UPND DON’T CONDONE VIOLENCE. Too soft
    And the Upnd media will not even mention it.

    29
    2
    • Deja Vu – You say HH will not condemn this but then you quote what he say denouncing violence ..you seem to be contradicting yourself in a haste to get LT likes and thumbs up.

      5
      30
    • Tarino Orange… there is no contradiction here. Like @ 2 what we want the president to do is order the police to quickly arrest these thugs. The traditional WE IN UPND DONOT CONDONE VIOLENCE is like a parent whose child misbehaves in front of visitors simply says YOU STOP THAT….THIS BOY IS JUST LIKE THAT…and no further action is taken.

      10
    • @Deja Vu, You are used to having PF politicians to ORDER THE POLICE to arrest people. The police know what to do without being ORDERED.

      3
      12
    • Deja Vu – The President has made it clear on this matter ….you want him to come to where you harvest cash crops and roll in front of your feet and plead with you that he is taking action. You will again post for likes that President is interferring with ZP..give your head a wobble PF way of dealing with issues is no more.

      1
      7
    • You honestly think the President would be not affected by this ..he was once chased by PF cadres he had to escape them via the radio station roof.

      1
      4
    • Blame the police, not UPND. Blame UPND only for not holding the police accountable for not doing their job. Otherwise the president has never told the police to arrest anyone, and should not tell the police to arrest anyone. He should fire the commissioner of the police if this nonsense where the police are drawing salaries, but turning a blind eye to violent crime like this. If HH does not anything about the police commissioner, the electorate should deal with him in 2026. That is how it should work

  2. The following are the steps which every responsible party should take and issue such a statement “the following cadres from our party have been expelled from the party for violent behavior and have been handed over to the Police and their prosecution and trial will be televised live until their case is disposed off” . Not these condemnation we see in the media but behind the scenes, they are being applauded. UPND seems to be falling in the PF trap, weak statements like “you are on your own if you engage in violence” without real action don’t help

    14
    • Actually they are not falling into the PF trap
      They have been like that even in opposition. Because of its reputation the PF always got the bad end of the stick. The Upnd media especially abroad made the PF look like the DRC M23 rebels. My relatives who live abroad got the impression that the PF were just hacking anyone they met on the streets.

      12
      2
    • “……My relatives who live abroad got the impression that the PF were just hacking anyone they met on the streets……”

      They were…………

      If you wore any red clothing, you were going to be brutalised……..

      5
      11
    • Deja Vu – Who are you fooooling here you think people have memories of fish to come back and swallow your claptrap hook, line, and sinker…your relatives abroad were right not to hoodwicked by you; people were hammered ST was beaten badly, HH couldnt even enter Chipata…cadres could walk in GRZ offices and threaten our civil servants etc.

    • Deja Vu – Who are you foooooooling here you think people have memories of fish to come back and swallow your claptrap hook, line, and sinker…your relatives abroad were right not to hoodwicked by you; people were hammmered ST was beaten badly, HH couldnt even enter Chipata…cadres could walk in GRZ offices and threaten our civil servants etc.

    • Deja Vu – Who are you f0oling here you think people have memories of fish to come back and swall0w your claptrap hook, line, and sinker…your relatives abroad were right not to hoodwicked by you; people were hammered ST was beaten badly, HH couldnt even enter Chipata…cadres could walk in GRZ offices and threaten our civil servants etc.

    • Deja Vu – Who are you f0oling here you think people have memories of fish to come back and swall0w your claptrap hook, line, and sinker

      1
      2
    • your relatives abroad were right not to be hoodwicked by you; people were hammmered ST was beaten badly, HH couldnt even enter Chipata…cadres could walk in GRZ offices and threaten our civil servants etc.

  3. The key here is…….

    “…suspected UPND caders..”

    This Could be a territorial fued amongst gangsters……….

    Let the police investigate…………

    1
    11
  4. #2.2 Spaka your party is the most violent party since the defunct ANC. No opposition was allowed to file nominations in Southern Province. Of course you will deny it. Alleged is professional and legal way to report incidents….it doesn’t mean it didn’t happen or someone didn’t do it.

    13
    6
    • Deja Vu – You had to mention SP because you are laying bait so you can start your favourite tribal topic you are itching for.

      3
      6
    • Tarino Orange….these are facts not tribalism. As for thumbs up….it is your illusion that makes you think I care about thumbs

      4
      4
    • Deja Vu – Stop mentioning it…we will not tolerate it you are trying to bait Spaka. Please update yourself with LT comments policy.

    • @Deja Vu, people miss this point. UPND are the common denominator of political violence. They have tangled with MMD before, remember the Mufumbwe saga? They then formulated the Mapatizya formula led by one Ackson Sejani. They have viciously fought every political from the time of their inception. Now that they are in power, what we are seeing now is just the tip of the iceberg.

      4
      1
    • Spaka is one of the biggest tribalists our country has seen. He revels in tribalism. Just casually search his previous posts

  5. ZP have more than enough evidence here to go and collect these thugs and arrest them …this should be condemned by everyone

    3
    2
  6. Spaka….has lost relevancy. its time to take break in UK and follow what the new prime is doing. UPND has disappointed us. They openly comfence that they copy what pf was doing. Because when question them ,the praise team say that’s what pf was doing .let people feel it.fimba upoke

    8
    1
    • @Gatsby Feel sorry for him. Journalists are broke in Zambia. So that shirt was a freeby he couldn’t afford to ignore

      3
      1
  7. Red dem.ons have risen from hell, you are yet to witness ugliest things, it’s just the beginning, imagine by the time it’s five years!

    3
    1
  8. In the beautiful country, Zambia, with a leader that does not love its people. Lovemore Phiri, we are with you. The pain inflicted on you by UPND is noted.

  9. We want to see police working now to arrest these people no matter whoever they are and no matter whichever party they belong to. That’s when we will believe that things have changed.

  10. People whu want to impress shallow thinking authorities will always be there. An upright president should distance himself from them. They attempt to impress shallow mindsets that they are protecting their turf yet all they are doing is looking for ways to get rewards from shallow Presidents. These UPND cadres havent been condemned by UPND leadership because they were doing what UPND wants. HH is happy with these louts. Only MISA will condemn them. Yet that journalist pays tax to be protected by Zambia Police. Zambia Police who are busy protecting HH from defamation.

  11. People who want to impress shallow thinking leadership will always be present. An upright president should distance himself from them. They attempt to impress shallow mindsets that they are protecting their turf yet all they are doing is looking for ways to get rewards from shallow Presidents. These UPND cadres havent been condemned by UPND leadership because they were doing what UPND wants. HH is happy with these louts. Only MISA will condemn them. Yet that journalist pays tax to be protected by Zambia Police. Zambia Police who are busy protecting HH from defamation.

  12. Tarino Orange and Spaka how hypocritical can you be… since you formed government police have been acting on instructions from cadres and not on their own.
    Don’t play the tribal card with me because I have seen more than the two of you combined.
    I’m not tribal but facts and reality cannot just be wished away.
    Enjoy your Sunday.

    2
    1
  13. @Gatsby Feel sorry for him. Journalists are broke in Zambia. So that shirt was a freeby he couldn’t afford to ignore

    3
    1
  14. Tarino Orange and Spaka, take a look at he thumbs down you are getting here. Very few bloggers agree with what you are saying.

  15. As long as we are not perfect nor angels we’re going to have such things happening, UPND is not a party of angels and so it’s like denying a pregnancy on behalf of your son as if you follow him wherever he goes and knows whatever he does. It is folly to deny that there no violent cadres in UPND, it is ironic that now because they’re the ruling party they’re in still with the hangover of being in the opposition where they spent quite a considerable number of years – I can’t blame them such is life and we’ll always have such. My advice is that give us a better Zambia you promised and we’ll applaud you in 2026.

Comments are closed.

Read more

Local News

Discover more from Lusaka Times-Zambia's Leading Online News Site - LusakaTimes.com

Subscribe now to keep reading and get access to the full archive.

Continue reading