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PF’s embarrassing double standards

The three church mother bodies say the decision by the Independent Broadcasting Authority to suspend Prime TV is not only embarrassing to the government, but also shows how dead the consciences of those in government have become.

Indeed, as Bertrand Russell said, “The infliction of cruelty with a good conscience is a delight to moralists. That is why they invented Hell.”

There is perhaps no phenomenon, which contains so much destructive feeling as ‘moral indignation,’ which permits envy or hate to be acted out under the guise of virtue.

Causing any damage or harm to one party in order to help another party is not justice.

Journalism without a moral position is impossible. Every journalist is a moralist. It’s absolutely unavoidable. A journalist is someone who looks at the world and the way it works, someone who takes a close look at things every day and reports what she sees, someone who represents the world, the event, for others. She cannot do her work without judging what she sees.

Those who plead their cause in the absence of an opponent can invent to their heart’s content, can pontificate without taking into account the opposite point of view and keep the best arguments for themselves, for aggressors are always quick to attack those who have no means of defence.

There can be no higher law in journalism than to tell the truth and to shame the devil.

“It is also our view that the grounds IBA has used to suspend the broadcasting licence of Prime TV must have been applied first on the Zambia National Broadcasting Corporation, Zambia Daily Mail and Times of Zambia before applying them on any other media house. Further, it is hypocritical to allow the suspension of a broadcasting licence of a private media house when government owned and controlled media outlets have miserably been unprofessional and unethical in the manner they cover news in the country, more especially during election times. The decision by the Independent Broadcasting Authority to suspend Prime TV is not only embarrassing to the government, but also it shows how dead the consciences of those in government have become. As a country that aspires to be Christian, we strongly believe that both government and IBA need to have recourse to the biblical principle as enshrined in the Gospel of Mathew 7:3-5 that a man cannot remove a speck from their brother’s eye when they themselves have not first removed the plank from their own eye,” stated the church mother bodies.

These double standards need to end.

Which television or radio station is more biased, unprofessional than ZNBC?

Are the people at the so-called Independent Broadcasting Authority that blind to see ZNBC’s biased and unprofessional reporting?

Noam Chomsky remarked, “For the powerful, crimes are those that others commit.”

It’s very clear that there’s a lot of double standards going on. We cannot use two different sets of judgment.

Unbiased reporting, ethical journalism is what the Patriotic Front and it government expects from the hive, not from its own news media outlets.

Patriotic Front politicians cant handle the truth unless you speak to them with a mirror.

The double standards being applied by the government cannot promote media professionalism and ethical journalism.

Laws and rules must be applied fairly to all.

This is nothing but harassment and intimidation of Prime TV and as such constitutes a threat to democracy.

The suspension of Prime TV’s broadcasting licence for 30 days is unjust, unfair and stupid. It must be lifted immediately.

This is nothing but crude censorship.

And this reflects Patriotic Front’s lack of confidence in itself. It is a hallmark of an authoritarian regime.

It’s an interesting thought to examine the motivations of the censor. Freedom of speech and expression is the mark of an open society, so what does it say about a people who would put limits on what can and cannot be said? Is the problem with the outrageous statement, or the culture that cannot accept its presence in the first place?

Wherever they stop television stations from broadcasting, they will also, in the end, stop human beings from talking, expressing themselves.

We urge all Zambians of good will to denounce the closure of Prime TV.

Today it is Prime TV, tomorrow it is you!

Remember that famous quote from Pastor Martin Niemöller: “They came first for the Communists

and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a Communist. Then they came for the trade unionists, and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a trade unionist. Then they came for the Jews, and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a Jew.

Then they came for me, and by that time no one was left to speak up.”

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