MAIKO Zulu says The Post Newspaper case has to be reviewed without looking at Fred M’membe as an opposition political leader.
In a statement yesterday, Zulu, an activist and musician, said there was a level of unfairness in the manner the newspaper was shut and subsequently its workers thrown on the street.
He said the closure of The Post needs to be revisited because there is reason to assume that it was done more from vengeance as opposed to a professional and fair act.
“Yes there may have been issues to do with tax but was procedure followed and was there no other company or let alone any media house that was in the same bracket as The Post in terms of owing ZRA? Furthermore, questions need to be asked as to whether the judicial system under which The Post was closed was impartial and free from political interference,” Zulu said. “We do not oppose The Post’s closure if it was done in a fair manner but we oppose the abuse of institutions for personal or political acts of vengeance. Precedent has already been set by IBA (Independent Broadcasting Authority) following the handing of Prime TV’s broadcasting licence.”
He said it is a well-known fact that Prime TV’s closure was politically motivated which gives fair reason to question the circumstances that led to the closure of The Post which left all its employees jobless and without benefits.
He noted with lamentations that some of the victims of the closure have sadly passed on.
Zulu added that one doesn’t need to be politically correct or in tandem with a particular regime for them to enjoy the fruits of justice.
“We therefore hope that justice will take its course in the matter because we strongly believe that every individual or organisation is entitled to fair treatment no matter who heads it as in the case of The Post. If everything was justified, then may it be so. It’s good to have Prime TV back after the unfair revocation of their broadcast licence was rescinded. #TheRevolutionWontBeTelevised,” said Zulu.
On June 21, 2016, less than two months before the general elections, ZRA seized the offices and printing press of then Zambia’s leading independent newspaper over a disputed tax liability.
The raid followed the authorities’ refusal to allow the The Post to enter into a repayment plan, and the PF government later refused to honour a court order to return the assets to The Post.
Later in November, Post Newspapers Limited was placed under liquidation with lawyer Lewis Mosho, who was appointed as provisional liquidator by judge Sunday Nkonde.