14 September 2017

Malawi: Justice Minister Complaints Anti-Government Bias On Private Media - 'We Shouldn't Only Blame MBC'

Minister of Justice and Constitutional Affairs Samuel Tembenu has asked representatives of the Public Affairs Committee (PAC) that they should not only look continued bias against opposition parties by taxpayer-funded Malawi Broadcasting Corporation (MBC) but also watch private media, claiming its coverage of the government is biased.

Tembenu raised the complaint when he led the Government Technical Team (GTT) meeting the quasi-relogious governance watchdog on the dialogue process over resolutions of the 5+1 All-inclusive Stakeholders' Conference held in June which, among others, proposed local government and national elections reforms.

The Minister accused some private media for the harshest criticism to President Peter Mutharika and his administration.

He said the private media diminishes the role of the government in good news but "dumps" on it when the story is bad.

"We shouldn't just deal with MBC but the media because the important point is to give correct information to the people," he said.

Tembenu said on the biasness of MCB, government will work with the broadcaster's board as per provisions of the Communication Act to ensure their coverage moves from propaganda to be impartial, fair and balanced.

President Peter Mutharika appointed the GTT following the outcome of an audience the quasi-religious institution had with him on April 21, 2016 where PAC presented resolutions from its February 2016 Fifth All-Inclusive Stakeholders Conference.

The two sides met at Capital Hotel in Lilongwe.

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