“The first thing dictators do is finish free press, to establish censorship. There is no doubt that a free press is the first enemy of dictatorship,” observed leader of the Cuban Revolution Commandante Fidel Castro.
This is the case with the attacks of Edgar Lungu and his minions against The Mast. And this was the reason for their destruction of The Post. The rest of what they claim or say is pretext. But they have even serious difficulties covering up their lies. Look at the involvement of the Zambia Police, the intelligence and other state agencies in their actions against The Post! Look at how the entire judicial process has been placed at Lewis Mosho’s disposal!
The are no assets of The Post being used by The Mast. If they were there, they would have collected them a long time ago. They have taken control of a printing press that does not belong to The Post without any evidence at all. They know very well that it doesn’t belong to The Post but they nevertheless seized it just to ensure that The Mast was crippled.
They also know very well that The Mast is not occupying any buildings belonging to The Post, but they are not ashamed to tell lies. Which building is The Mast occupying that belongs to The Post? Which leases of The Post is The Mast using? These cannot be generalised. Point them out you liars! And there are no motor vehicles owned by The Post that The Mast is using. You liars, go to RTSA and check the ownership of every automobile that The Mast is using!
We have seen how they are able to abuse the police and the entire judicial process in the case of The Post. They went to Dr Fred M’membe’s house, seized a printing press and boat he personally owns, removing them from his use without any proof. And they are able to do that with impunity because the judicial process is totally under their control.
But they are setting precedents in terms of protection of property rights which will soon come to haunt all of them, including the judicial officers they are using, or rather abusing. We know that their intention is to cripple The Mast and seize every asset it is using, again, without proof. What they can’t forgive is The Mast’s market dominance, quality, independence and influence. They access the media surveys that have been conducted by their friends and they know the strong market position of The Mast. They are not sleeping over The Mast, a newspaper they had long written off. They can’t accept the fact that it is still there exposing their corruption and abuses like no other.
But as that revolutionary and internationalist par excellence, Dr Ernesto Che Guevara, once aptly put it, we would rather die on our feet than live on our knees.
We will not cede any of our principles for us to be accommodated by Edgar and his agents.
So, no amount of lies against The Mast, The Post will now do. Everyone can see through your lies, your evil schemes and intentions. And we know for sure that nothing is permanent; all these evils schemes they have against The Mast, The Post won’t last. Their day of reckoning is fast approaching.