Malawi media challenges Mutharika over attacks: President told to ‘stop  living in an illusory world’

Malawi mainstream media has condemned President Peter Mutharika’s conduct for attempting to intimidate journalists as unacceptable and dangerous to democracy.

Misa chairperson Tereza Ndanga: Journalists cannot be praise singers, they have a watchdog role

Mutharika has been making a barrage of criticism against the local media  and repeated his  attacks on Monday at this year’s John Chilembwe Day commemoration at providence Industrial Mission (PIM) in Chiradzulu when he said the media is “busy trashing this country.”

Mutharika said worldwide , Malawi is rated number 3 and in Africa as number 1 as a country to visit in 2018 but local media do not cover such stories.

“You will not find that in our local media because they are busy trashing this country. By doing that, they think they are hurting me. They are making a mistake. What they do not know is that they are destroying their own country. This kind of behaviour must change. We need to transform our mindset,” he said.

Mutharika also expressed displeasure with the media on its reports on what he thinks is exaggeration of the corruption situation in the country, saying the journalists have been peddling lies in their reports that there are seven cabinet ministers involved in the K236 billion Cashgate scandal.

“There has been mention of seven cabinet ministers. This is a total lie; a fabrication of a certain malicious, vicious, and an irresponsible editor. The Anti- Corruption Bureau just announced last week that there are no cabinet ministers in the said case. Instead of informing the public, this paper is misinforming the country. We must love our country,” he said.

Mutharika said without mentioning the name of the editor and the newspaper.

Malawi’s flagship newspaper, The Daily Times, led the criticism of Mutharika attacks to the objective media. The  Media Institute of Southern Africa (Misa) Malawi chapter has also added its voice.

In its leader comment, the Daily Times  noted that the four years that Mutharika has been President of Malawi, one thing he has done consistently is to blame the media for anything that comes to his mind.
The paper said  Mutharika should stop “living in an illusory world” where he thinks the media will clap hands at little efforts to fight corruption or keep mum in the face of rampant corruption as is the case now.
“The President knows that even within his Cabinet there is booming corruption. Mutharika must not look far; just a glance at his lieutenants would be enough to convince him that corruption is not as minimal as he wants the world to believe.
“People who are close to power have overnight gotten rich, yet there is nothing they are doing other than stealing from the public purse,” reads the editorial comment.

It said the media that Mutharika is working so hard to vilify have played a watchdog role and have stood for Malawians to expose and fight corruption

The paper said instead of “venting his anger” at the media, Mutharika should engage in a serious war against corruption.

“Whether he likes it or not, Mutharika must accept that the fight against corruption has weakened on his watch more than on any of the presidents that this country has had,” reads the editorial in part.

The newspaper said the media will not relent in exposing the corruption that is flourishing under Mutharika’s watch.

Meanwhile, Misa-Malawi chairperson Teresa Ndanga  has  said the core role of journalists is not praising government for doing its job, saying  if there any complaint on acts of unprofessionalism in the media the government should formally lodged with her body.

“If the President’s view is based on evidence of publication of false stories by journalists, we urge government to share those concerns formally to Misa. We do not support unprofessional reporting and therefore, we will address government’s concerns once we have a formal complaint,” Ndanga said in quoted reported by The Nation.

Ndanga schooled Mutharika that journalists are not praise singers or  not there for PR stunts, saying their role is to be watchdog to society unearthing wrongs so that authorities know where to focus their energies.

The Malawi media managers are also on record to have  expressed concern with  what they called  “the highly belligerent attitude”  that the  Mutharika government has taken against the independent media “to silence it from telling Malawians the truth.”

Bright Molande the Director of Communications at State House said the media “ cannot bully the Head of State with propaganda and false reports.”

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Mzanga Dausi
Guest

The first law of corruption is that a country sinks. This sinking continues such that its president looses respect at home and abroad.

Don’t fight a poor journalist. Fight corruption. Deal with thieves in government they are the ones tarnishing the county’s image overseas.

Waku Gauteng
Guest

When you antagonise media you empower them to dig more rot. Any sane will be advised to have cordial relationships with media. These are professionals and should be treated as such. I don’t understand why African leaders are not ashamed of corruption.

Shenanigans
Guest

No administration has ever won war against the media

zagwa
Guest

But on a serious note. This man APM would do all of us a big favour by going back wherever it is he came from. He is so out of touch and is not even interested to learn how we are living. Instead he chooses to ridicule us. This is recipe for ethnic clashes and come to think of it alhomwe simungalimbe……the only things you know ndi kuchinda ndi kuba basi!!!!!!!

Remnant
Guest
Which media is this man talking about? Does MBC form part of the media fraternity in Malawi? If it does then why is he complaining? Does MBC talk/beam ill of him and his government? Those who want to hear or see anything pro-his government tune and watch his MBC. But for those of us who would like to have a balanced news item go for the other media houses. And by the way if a media person sees nothing good to report about , is he/she expected to fabricate news? Zimenezo ndi zimene tinakana ife ndi Kongelesi yakalezo. Anthu amene… Read more »
Banda
Guest

Why does the media not want to be criticised? The media is way too negative and aggressive in Malawi – it’s way too partisan too. The working of several private media organisations is similar to MBC’s bias towards government. They think they are holier when they are equally corrupt and at times incompetent.

Kunena za ena
Guest

Chomwe chimanditseketsa ine ndichakuti, if Media yanenedwa they trash to defend themselves but they are happen kunena ma politicians. A gossiper would not be happy to be gossiped that the tenancy of Malawi Media. They write stories in the news in order to sell the paper. Propagandists like Teleza, I don’t like her mwina akanakongola.

com rade
Guest

People like Kenena za ena is the reason why we are a shithole country, the media has the right to criticize the asshole President

Shit-hole Dausi
Guest

Another shit-hole comment from a shit-hole cadet!

Igwe
Guest

Teleza is a journalist and half. Iwe uli ndi vuto, kagwere uko!

Watson
Guest

Very true brother, our media is full of people who do not love their nation. They make money out of lies. Tereza wake up, you fraternity is not professional

yandula
Guest

personal attack mu Lomweh ameneyo; the media are only doing their job right! and malawians are well informed of the misdeeds by dpp gurus’ muzalira chaka chammawa tu!

Bwampini
Guest

Mbuzzi zaanthu izi , its Forbes magazine which has rated Malawi one of must visit destination. So whats the problem. Forbes is world class media. NO Malawian media practitioneer can work at Forbes, even as a cleaner, coz dont qualify. Good at tarnishing their own country and earn peanuts much less than what a dog chain selling vendor in the street makes in a month

Chakanika
Guest

Inu mukuona ngati Forbes ndi Jesus? Inunso ndi inu mbuzi heavy.

chimanga
Guest

Is forbes based in malawi to see the shit we are going through?

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