Government refuses to re-open Radio Lyambai

Government says it will not re-open Radio Lyambai in Mongu until investigations into its alleged involvement in broadcasting seditious materials regarding the Barosteland controversy are complete.

Minister of Information and Broadcasting Services Ronnie Shikapwasha said the police are still investigating the issue and that it is premature for Government to consider re-opening the radio station.

Lieutenant General Shikapwasha said in an interview in Lusaka on February 3 that it is important for the media to contribute to nation building.

“The radio station will remain closed until all allegations levelled against it are investigated thoroughly,” he said.

Gen. Shikapwasha said no-one is above the law and that the issue of Radio Lyambai will be dealt with according to the laws of the land.

He said if the station is found wanting, it will face the wrath of the law.

“Anybody who wants to take the law in their own hands will be dealt with firmly so that a message is sent to all those who think Government will handle this matter lightly,” the minister said.

Gen Shikapwasha, who is also Chief Government spokesperson, said the government does not want anyone to violate other people’s rights and spread hatred, tribalism and violence.

“The media must ensure that it builds and unites the nation through positive critics and not spearheading acts of violence to destabilise the country,” he said.

Gen. Shikapwasha said when peace is disturbed, it is difficult to regain it. Some media bodies have been calling on Government to re-open Radio Lyambai, which was closed in the wake of violence in Mongu in mid-January.

Radio Lyambai was shut down after allegedly broadcasting seditious materials over the Barotseland Agreement.

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