Maputo — Mozambique's largest circulation weekly paper, the independent "Savana", has announced that it has no intention to halt publication because of the Covid-19 crisis.
In a notice, issued on Wednesday in its sister publication, the daily newsheet "Mediafax", "Savana" points out that Mozambican public health officials "do not attribute any particular risk to the sale and circulation of newspapers, and there is no restriction for either readers or advertisers".
"Savana" is clearly responding to the decision of the media company SOICO to suspend publication of the print edition of its daily paper "O Pais", on the grounds that newsprint might somehow transmit the coronavirus from one person to another.
"Newspapers continue to circulate throughout the world, even with the restrictions imposed in the most extreme cases of the advance of the coronavirus pandemic, unlike what some local alarmists imagine", says "Savana".
Despite the lockdown decreed in Britain on Tuesday, the papers are still on sale, while in Italy, the European country worst hit by Covid-19, the public can still buy "La Reppublica". The same can be said for major newspapers in the United States and South Africa. Indeed, South African printing houses are exempt from the lockdown decreed by President Cyril Ramaphosa, precisely because "they are regarded as an essential service", according to an executive of Lowveld Media, the South African company that prints "Savana".
So "Savana" promises its readers that its traditional print edition will remain available during the current crisis, alongside its on-line edition.