Lilongwe rural central MP Lobin Lowe has asked parliment not to approve the vote for state controlled Malawi Broacasting Corporation (MBC), saying the broadcaster works for the ruling than the nation.
Speaking in parliament on Tuesday, Lowe said MBC was more of a Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) broadcaster than a public broadcaster run on tax payer money.
“I suggest we should remove subvention for MBC, the broadcaster is not helping Malawians,” said Lowe.
Said Lowe: “Despite passing a motion in the House, MBC has not changed as expected. MBC is still broadcasting hate messages and still being biased in its operations. If he is aware, what is the ministry going to put in place to contain the unfortunate situation as we go towards the general elections campaign.”
He said MBC being a public broadcaster and not a party entity, is supposed to serve all Malawians equally and be run by professionals and not politicians.
“What MBC is doing now despite calls for it to change I suggest that we don’t give money to its vote, last time I know that we gave it K1 so we can do the same this time,” said Lowe.
Lowe said the situation is getting out of hand as the nation gears for the election next year.
“MBC is supposed to be a public broadcaster not a party entity. It is supposed to serve all Malawians. It is supposed to employ professional journalists not politicians,” he said.
However, deputy speaker Esther Mcheka Chilenje told the House that it is illegal not to fund a government entity, reminding the National Assembly that parliament gave MBC a mere funding of K1 for same reasons.
Minister of Information Nicholas Dausi was elusive on the matter, saying his ministry does not control MBC.
He said broadcasters are controlled by Macra whilst the Media Council of Malawi comes in on ethical reasons.
MBC has ‘Never again’ program which demonises the opposition Malawi Congress Party.
President Peter Mutharika, at a recent political rally in Chiradzulu, acknowledged the program and its producer and presenter Hope Chisanu.
Chisanu, presenter at MBC, has been lopped in by the DPP as the master of ceremony during presidential rallies.
He puts on DPP regalia, says DPP slogans and attacks the opposition despite the fact that he is a civil servant working for MBC.
During a meeting with officials from MBC on their 2018/19 budget outlook and a reflect on the 2017/18 budget, members of Parliamentary Cluster on Communication and Trade expressed dismay over how the broadcasting house manages some of its programmes which they said are propaganda and a direct attack on some individuals in society.
In his response MBC director general Aubrey Sumbuleta while acknowledging that there were some problems with their programming, said they are working hard to improve the approach to their content.
The broadcaster has been provided K2.1 billion for the 2018/19 financial year.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :