"It's shameful that the UDF party wants to take us back to the dark days,"

Mr Gwanda Chakuamba (2003)

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Monday, August 11, 2008

Bakili Muluzi accusation of MBC pointless

by DailyTimes

IT is widely said a drunken parent can not counsel
a son on the dangers of alcoholism. The children will wonder why the
parents indulge in the practices if the vices are at all dangerous. It
is therefore advised that parents be exemplary if their children are to
adopt good behaviour.

United Democratic Front (UDF) chairman Bakili Muluzi, also proprietor
of Joy FM radio has been bashing Malawi Broadcasting Corporation (MBC)
and Television Malawi (TVM) for unprofessional conduct.

But one gets a picture of a wayward parent giving counsel to an equally wayward child.

It is common knowledge that MBC and TV M are biased towards the ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP).

Berson Lijenda, chairman of the media committee of parliament and
former MBC employee, once said that whoever sees nothing wrong with MBC
and TVM is obsessed with untruth.

Even minister Patricia Kaliati, who claims there is nothing wrong with
TVM and MBC, knows she is lying every time she says there is
professionalism at the two public broadcasters.

Many people and organisations have pleaded with the powers that be to
change the style of broadcasting at the two public stations and open up
the airwaves to the opposition as well.

Interestingly, UDF is among those weeping the loudest. On Muluzi’s
direction, UDF legislators have in the past denied MBC and TVM their
budgetary funding.

That, however, has only propelled the broadcasters to intensify their
selling of the ruling DPP’s propaganda, raising fears as to how
parliament would handle them in this year’s budget.

Even surprising is the fact that Muluzi’s Joy FM is following in the
footsteps of MBC. It has since introduced carbon copies of programmes
that Muluzi and his party condemn on MBC.

If Muluzi managed to note the unprofessional conduct at MBC, then he
must have noticed the same at his radio since the programmes are

And the fact that these programmes continue to run on his radio shows
that he sees nothing wrong in them, which is why his accusation of MBC
is pointless.

Is it not ironic that Muluzi views Mpungwepungwe pa Ndale on MBC as
unprofessional while he has no problems with Chilungamo Chilipati and
Nkhanga Zaona on his Joy radio.

In fact there are many ironies.

One wonders therefore if at all Muluzi’s claim that government is abusing MBC and TVM is sober.

Is he saying that would have treated the institutions any better or
that he will not abuse them again should he be allowed to contest and
win the next year’s election?

If Muluzi really sees something wrong with MBC he should have made his
Joy radio an exemplary station and show the nation and MBC what
professional and ethical broadcasting is.

But if Muluzi thinks he will fool the nation that TVM and MBC are
unprofessional while expecting that his radio will get away with the
same just because he privately owns it, then not all everyone will be

Muluzi should know that the fact that he owns Joy radio is not a
guarantee for him to misuse the station the same way. Mutharika and his
cohorts should know too that being in government is not an entitlement
to abusing taxpayer- run broadcasters.

For Muluzi, he must know that media ethics and guidelines the world
over are the same regardless of whether the medium is privately owned
or not.

Already other quarters feel, and justifiably so, that Muluzi must taste
his own medicine without a murmur as he himself abused MBC and TVM
during his reign.

But considering that the UDF chair has had a feel of what it is like to
be given a blackout, only to be covered for the wrong reasons, one
would have thought Muluzi has learnt it the hard way and would change.

No one can believe it that MBC and TVM will become any better at all
should he contest and turn out victorious next year. He abused the
broadcasters during his ten year reign. He is abusing Joy radio.

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