Lusaka, June 22nd 2011
Caritas Zambia is saddened by the continued lies that are being peddled in the state owned media regarding an imaginary relationship between ourselves and the Patriotic Front which are being created by some individuals. While the peddlers of this imaginary relationship know the position of Caritas Zambia, they have chosen to ignore this truth and instead go with their own creations which are based on lies. Unfortunate as it may be, we as an organisation cannot stop them from pushing their agenda.
Caritas Zambia has taken note of these false allegations and lies that are being reported in the public media but we refuse to engage in confrontation with such individuals as their only motive is to distract us from our work. As stated before, we reiterate our position that we are Non‐ Partisan and we have never endorsed any political party and do not intend to do so now. As an organisation, we take the principle of non‐ partisanship seriously as one of our core values and that is why we always advise our members who have political interest to resign their positions in the organization.
Caritas Zambia would also like to appeal to the Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ) not to bow to pressure from these individuals who are burnt on tarnishing the image of Caritas Zambia by linking it to partisan politics. We have so far collaborated very well with ECZ and will continue to do so in order to complement their effort in the electoral process.
We have also noted with concern that the state media has allowed itself to be used by partisan cadres at the expense of creating a platform for constructive dialogue and setting the agenda for all politicians. The state owned media need not be reminded that they are financed by tax payers and are therefore answerable to the Zambian citizens. Therefore, they cannot get away with the kind of journalism that they are practicing where they even forget the basic practices in journalism such as getting the views from the other side in order to come up with a balanced story. What we are witnessing now is appalling and if not checked will lead to loss of public confidence in the media.
We therefore, urge the media, especially the public media to reassess themselves and begin to set the agenda for political discourse and promote healthy debate among stakeholders instead of carrying hate speech and articles which are only aimed at destroying organisations, political parties and the Church.
Milimo Mwiba (Ms)