Saturday, October 04, 2008

Fr Bwalya demands Mulongoti's resignation over Post threats

Fr Bwalya demands Mulongoti's resignation over Post threats
By Mutuna Chanda in Kitwe and Maluba Jere in Lusaka
Saturday October 04, 2008 [04:00]

INFORMATION minister Mike Mulongoti's threat of closing The Post is enough ground for him to resign, former MISA Zambia chairperson Fr Frank Bwalya has said. And United Party for National Development (UPND) stated that Mulongoti's threats on The Post were a clear recipe of anarchy and a serious sign of what Zambians should expect. In an interview, Fr Bwalya said if the government was aggrieved, there were proper channels that they could use to seek redress.

"That kind of attitude is archaic and does not belong to today's democratic dispensation," Fr Bwalya said.

"Those threats are enough to demand that Mulongoti resign. If they are aggrieved by what The Post is writing, there are adequate channels to seek redress. If this attitude is allowed, another person will come up and say 'let us close such and such radio station and newspaper' and there will be no freedom of the press to talk about. This is an affront to press freedom."

However, Fr Bwalya said The Post should operate within the law.
And UPND in a statement noted that the threats by Mulongoti were a clear manifestation of the looming dictatorship in the event that Vice-President Rupiah Banda won the October 30 election.

The party stated that the threats were an indication of the desperation in the Vice-President's camp.

"The United Party for National Development is alarmed by the statement attributed to one nominated member of parliament and government spokesperson Mike Mulongoti threatening violence against any perceived opponents of the ruling party presidential candidate, Rupiah Banda," it stated.

They stated that no matter what threats Mulongoti issued, Zambians would prevail and defend the media that informs them.

"Instead of threatening the media, the Banda campaign committee should argue with facts to the issues as laid bare in the media," it stated.

The party also expressed sadness over the conduct of former works and supply minister Ludwig Sondashi for threatening violence against anyone who mentioned names of opposition leaders in his presence.

"Although we doubt his capacity to unleash any blows, we condemn such threats of violence," it stated. "We are aware that Sondashi who is threatening violence is supposed to be a constitutional lawyer... His violent behaviour shouldn't be brought into the public arena," stated the UPND.

On Wednesday on Radio Lyambai in Mongu during a good governance programme sponsored by MISA, Mulongoti threatened to close The Post if it did not cooperate with the government and the courts of law. Mulongoti said government would use the already available laws in the statute books to revoke The Post's licence so that it could stop operating.

And on Monday during a rally at Solwezi showgrounds, Mulongoti, in apparent reference to The Post, said after the MMD wins the presidential election on October 30, they would ask the Vice-President to go out for a while so that on his return, Vice-President Banda would find all the problems sorted out.

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At 8:43 PM , Blogger Dennis.Temba said...

Iam a huge follower of your blogs,you keep me informed and educated,God bless you!!
I can't wait for the general election so we can oust this corrupt and selfish MMD government,I'm not sure Micheal Sata and his Patriotic Front is what we need,he was for chiluba's third term,and worse he's a UNIP Veteran..we need fresh minds,educated yound Zambians,people who are smart and think like you.


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