Thursday, December 24, 2009

Kunda is enemy number one of the media - Chifuwe

Kunda is enemy number one of the media - Chifuwe
By Chibaula Silwamba
Thu 24 Dec. 2009, 04:01 CAT

Press Freedom Committee of The Post (PFC) secretary general Sheik Chifuwe
GEORGE Kunda is enemy number one of the media, Press Freedom Committee of The Post (PFC) secretary general Sheik Chifuwe charged yesterday.

Commenting on the Vice-President George Kunda driven punitive media bill that the government is working on, Chifuwe said Vice-President Kunda belonged to the Stone Age and was behaving like an emperor that wanted to preserve his stay on the throne.

“Mr George Kunda has identified himself as enemy number of one the media. It’s unthinkable that in this age and day, somebody holding such a high position of Vice-President and justice minister can even start brooding such ideas to come up with archaic laws against the media,” said Chifuwe in an interview in Lusaka.

“So a person who behaves in such a manner is an enemy of the industry and he shall be treated as such. You cannot pick the worst practices to use as a model in a country that is supposed to be democratic. We think that Mr Kunda does not belong to this age; he belongs to the Stone Age where he believes he is an emperor who is going to preserve his position at the expense of society.”

He said the actions of Vice-President Kunda would violate the rights of Zambians.

“We think that what Mr Kunda is doing is not only against the media but the human rights of the Zambian people. He is clearly curtailing freedom of expression, freedom of the press so that people cannot get divergent views, so that he regulates what information the people will get,” Chifuwe said.

“He wants to preside over an ignorant society so that he can perpetuate the misrule that has already been exhibited by this government. But you cannot stop people that are determined to govern themselves. So he has got a choice to rethink his Stone Age, archaic legislation.”

He observed that harmony could not be created in a country when other people were oppressed.

“In any case you can only oppress people so far, you cannot oppress them all the time. George Kunda might not account now for his decisions but one day he shall be made to account, no matter how long it takes. He might think he is clever now, but all the bad decisions will follow him,” warned Chifuwe.

“The best he can do now is to show a lot of humility and try to do what is right for himself rather than allowing himself to be driven by his self preservation and selfishness.”

Sources in the Ministry of Justice have revealed to The Post that the government, at the instigation of Vice-President Kunda was formulating a punitive media bill, which is a hybrid of media laws in Kenya, Uganda and Zimbabwe.

The source said the media bill is primarily being driven by Vice-President Kunda who is said to have vested interest in the matter in his continued quest to fix The Post and its editor Fred M’membe.

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