MISA Malawi, MCM condemns attacks on media
By; Vincent Gunde
MISA Malawi and the Media Council of Malawi [MCM], have strongly condemned threats and attacks on Times Group Editor in Chief, George Kasakula and Mibawa TV Presenter and Reporter, Steve Kondwa Banda by individuals who are apparently offended by the journalists’ opinions on Covid -19 risk allowance demands by teachers.
MISA Malawi and MCM claims that the two journalists are being threatened through phone calls, whatsapp and Face book, describing this as clearly attack on the media, reminding those issuing these threats and attacks that Section 34,35 and 36 of the Constitution guarantee freedom of opinion, freedom of expression and freedom of the press saying the attacks and threats are not only criminal, but a direct attack on the media freedom, freedom of expression and freedom of opinion.
The two media Bodies want to believe that those issuing such threats and attacks are members of the Teachers Union of Malawi [TUM], urging the TUM to tame its members before they are forced to take further action.
This is contained in a statement co – jointly signed by Teresa Temweka Ndanga, Chairperson, MISA Malawi and Wisdom Chimgwede, Chairperson of MCM dated 26th August, 2020 on the threats and attacks on the media.
Kasakula made a request to the teachers in the country to be patriotic by not pressurizing government to give them risk allowance once schools open.
’’Teachers can’t compare themselves with health workers, in fact health workers test you and treat you, while zinazi, I don’t think so, let’s look at substantive issues,’’ Kasakula quoted in the media.
The teachers say Kasakula’s request and by calling them as Zinazi, is a rude and insult to all of them saying last time, it was Mibawa TV, today on Times and tomorrow on Zodiak, one concerned teacher declaring war against all media houses in Malawi and their journalists urging at least 100 teachers or lecturers to take part in peaceful demonstrations .
They have been demanding an apology from Mibawa TV which management did on behalf of the journalist named while Kasakula has refused to apologize, a development which has fuel more anger on the part of teachers.
MISA Malawi and the MCM are reminding TUM and all teachers in Malawi that the media has on innumerable occasions covered stories in the education sector that have positively impacted the teachers welfare saying to be shortsightedness to turn the sides against each other because of some differences in opinion.
The two media Bodies are further reminding members of the general public that those aggrieved or injured by the media in any way, can report to and engage MCM; the body entrusted with the responsibility of upholding media professionalism in the country for redress rather than resorting to criminal ways of demonstrating dissent.