Malawi govt to trace individuals who abuse social media

Government has expressed concern over irresponsible use of social media by some people saying it could undermine the country’s stability especially during this period of tripartite elections scheduled for May 21.

Mussa: Government concerned about social media misuse

Minister of Information and Communication Technology Henry Mussa expressed the concern Thursday during a familiarization tour at Telekom Networks Malawi Limited Head Offices in Blantyre.

“It has become increasingly clear that some people are misusing the social media,” Mussa said.

As examples, he noted that some people had posted details of accidents before victims’ families could be officially notified.

He added that that some people had been blackmailed via social media.

The minister said that was why, as government, they thought it wise to engage TNM on what could be done to trace people who misuse social media.

“We engaged with TNM, who are also equally concerned at the trend at which the social media is being misused in this country,” he said.

Mussa also expressed fear that the social media “might have the potential to create chaos” during elections expected to take place in May this year.

He then urged Malawians to help government in discouraging the abuse of social media.

Mussa also warned people who post false news, especially on Facebook, that they will be heavily punished because they create tension.

“This is not only about the government; it is in the interest of the entire nation. New media, if not properly managed, has the potential to take this country to an unpleasant situation,” he said.

As   government, Mussa said they will not allow some people to create tension by spreading false news about others and added that the country is entitled to live in peace.

“People should take responsibility if they post something that has disaffection,” Mussa said.

“For instance, there was an instance where somebody posted false news about the death of a person who was alive. I don’t think that is the responsible way of using social media.”

The Minister said fake news on social media is a public enemy hiding behind the cover of free speech and insisted that government can no longer turn a blind eye on it.

“We want people to use social media to post things that can help in the development of the country,” he said.

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kazenje
Guest

I HAVE OBSERVED THAT MOST OF PPLE THINK THAT THIS CONTROL OVER THE SOCIAL MEDIA IS WASTE OF TIME. THEREFORE WE SHOULD NOT COMPLAIN ABOUT BECOZ MOST OF U HAVE NOT BEEN OFFENDED BY THE SOCIUAL MEDIA. WHEN UR TURN COMES THAT WHEN U WILL SEE HE NEED. DEVELOP COUNTRIES THAT ARE THE CAMPIONS OF DEMOCRECY HAVE PUT SAGEGARD MEASURES WHY NOT US. LET US THINK CRITICALLY LEAVING POLITICS

Kanundu
Guest
Kanundu

Mwapangana record nokha uko ndi aBakili Muluzi anuwo nde mutipake nazo ife? Just deal with it yourselves internally ife zisatikhuze…..

As for TNM, khalikani! Muluza nazo business izi…..musayambe ndale asiyeni asova!

Katakwe
Guest

Bad direction Mr, Minister you are taking. Social media is supposed to provide immediate communication and there is nothing to inform the relatives of accident victims before you as Government inform them. We are in a digital era where it is believed that it is no longer the biggest that will survive, but rather the fastest.

Kumzy
Guest
Kumzy

This will take u no whr honourable focus on protecting ur citizens

BigMan
Guest
BigMan

Instead of worrying about the chaos and criminality being perpetrated by your cadets and corrupt dpp officials you think the biggest threat is people posting on facebook, whatsapp or Nyasatimes???? You are a bunch of old fools and i doubt very much if TNM shares your concern. This is why we need young and dynamic leadership, not 80 year olds who don,t even know how to use social media. Foolish governments who have lost grip on power always resort to being dictatorial, violent and try to suppress the freedom of expression enjoyed by their citizens, but it never works. Focus… Read more »

Lilian
Guest
Lilian

Misplaced priorities. Would you please spare all those effort and resources in investigating or rather tracking albino body parts market.

Wachiona Ndani
Guest
Wachiona Ndani

Government is in the forefront of disseminating fake news ( propaganda) through mainstream media ( MBC ). What do you expect well-informed people to do when they want to enlighten ordinary folk about what’s really happening in their country? Social media has come at the right time in modern times to counteract govt propaganda. I doubt that you will be able to stifle freedom of expression / information in this day and age ( not unless you completely shut down the internet). To regulate it the way it’s done in China or Russia is going to be very expensive and… Read more »

Mbanji
Guest

South African Airways has just cancelled Flights to and from Blantyre, this means we will lose revenue/ business somehow that’s where government should be putting much of the effort rather than being paranoid. You talk tourism but you cant fix Airports! Busy politicking.