MBC warned propaganda can cause civil unrest in Malawi, urged to be balanced

The Malawi Broadcasting Corporation (MBC) has been advised to be fair and balanced in its coverage as its continued  pro-government propaganda despite relying on funds from taxpayers holding divergent political views could cause civil unrest in the run up to May 2019 Tripartite Elections.

Citizen demonstrate his anger by carrying placard against MBC leadership

MBC is taxpayer-funded media

Leading daily newspaper, The Nation, in an editorial comment on Thursday advised that radio is a critical medium for desseminatioj of information, and if it is abused, has potential to cause civil unrest.

“It happened in Rwanda. A radio station called Radio Television Libre des Mille Collins was in the forefront broadcasting hate messages that sparked genicide, resulting in the killing of 800 000 people I’m just 100 days in 1994.

“Nobody wants that to happen to Malawi; hence, the need for MBC to be cautious in its programming. Malawi has been known as a peace-loving country,” said the paper in the editorial.

The paper pointed out that MBC, as a public broadcaster, owes its allegiance to the public that funds it through taxes.

“This means whatever it broadcasts has to be of public interest,” said the publication, urging the broadcaster  to desist from propagating hate.

During the joint Parliamentary Cluster of Trade and Industry and Media and Communications, the legislators on Wednesday asked the broadcaster to explain why it continues producing pro-government propaganda despite relying on funds from taxpayers holding divergent political views.

The members of Parliament (MPs) faulted MBC for its programmes, some of which directly attack some political leaders, especially from the opposition, who are never given a chance to be heard.

Kasungu East MP Madalitso Kazombo (MCP) asked MBC director general Aubrey Sumbuleta  why the broadcaster airs programmes perceived to be bent on provoking some individuals and political groups.

He said: “Why does MBC have programmes like Sapita Kawiri which are not good? What was the aim behind coming up with such programmes? Are such programmes educational or informative? This is not good and there is need for you to change.”

Sumbuleta, who led the MBC team, made commitment  to improve coverage perceived to be biased against opposition political parties.

In February this year, MCP reported MBC to Malawi Communications Regulatory Authority (Macra) seeking intervention on alleged biased reporting and programming.

However, Macra, in a letter signed by its director general Godfrey Itaye, dismissed the complaint, asking MCP to lodge its complaint with MBC.

MCP described the Macra response as strange as the institution is mandated to act on media houses that flout provisions of the Communications Act.

In the editorial comment, The Nation, has called on Macra and the Malawi Electoral Commission to play their rightful role by ensuring that MBC operates in line with the tenets of good journalism, which is being fair, objective and balanced.

Civil society organisations have also accused the taxpayer-funded broadcaster of bias and lack of professionalism.

 

 

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Just a Penny
Guest

You have been making so much noise about MBC, you mean you haven’t got the solution yet? Shame!

parties without presidential candidates
Guest
parties without presidential candidates

Anzathu a MBC timakhala nawo mmMnjamu,Chitawira,Chinyonga,Chimwankhunda etc. We are watching them….

Tenzi Mzungu
Guest
Tenzi Mzungu

National newspaper hailed JB very much during her reign . Did you hear APM on MBC during JB time? Did APM complain ? Yet he won the elections. She had all the powers to make MBC independent and even prosecute the killers of Chasowa and those who cashgated during Bingu time but she was busy with nonsense and National was applauding that. Go to hell

Chilungamo
Guest
Chilungamo

Ndiye ufitiwo wa a LHOMWE!!! In fact APM fully participated in all presidential debates in 2014. MAKIYOBASI inayamba nthawi ya BINGU koma inathesedwa nthawi ya JB. In fact even nthawi ya Muluzi MBC NEVER used to broadcast such hate speeches after a DOMINANT MCP ERA for that matter. Izi zayamba ndi a LHOMWE.. Ndi za chiLHOMWE zabwera ndi a LHOMWE and of course kuti zithe Malawians should NEVER vote for a a LHOMWE president again. Ndi mtundu wozikonda koopsya. They only use others for their cause and Tcheya and now Chilima are the BEST WITNESSES. And just recently a Lhomwe… Read more »

Fodoi
Guest
Fodoi

The balt lies with the sleepy president who has all the power to make a directive to ask MBC to stop this nonsense. But alas he is do aroof

Marx
Guest
Marx

MBC is such a useless broadcaster, so useless. We just waste resources on them. Mxiiii

brainy
Guest
brainy

Kowuluka kamatela. Inu siwoyambilira mutha kuwafunsa anzanu omwe anali pamenepo.Boma limasintha.

Chriss
Guest
Chriss

Malawians are tires of this , let us fire MBC

Omex70
Guest
Omex70

MBC and MACRA do not deserve tax payers’ money. It a waste of resource to fund these institutions led by DPP die-hards. MBC is just a DPP mouth piece. MACRA is only active when it isent to threaten private radios like Zodiak and other. This nonsense must stop.

Shambize
Guest
Shambize

We have already told our MP from our constituency not to vote for anything to do with MBC. He can only do to the contrary at his own peril and he will not go back to parliament come May 2018.

Mavanya Munyapa
Guest
Mavanya Munyapa

Shame to MBC end of the day they are crying for additional funding on the adverts for the DPP are they paid for or are announced freely if that is the case forget our tax payers money

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