Information and Broadcasting Minister Mwansa Kapeya is in the United States of America on what the Zambian Embassy in Washington DC has dubbed a comparative study tour of Freedom of Information.
Kapeya, a former radio drama comedian-turned-politician and is President Michael Sata’s chief government spokesperson, arrived in the US on Monday accompanied by his permanent secretary George Zulu.
Kapeya, who forged form three (equivalent of grade nine now) results to get a job at ZNBC claims he has a degree in law.
Before leaving the country, Kapeya had vowed his government which is seeking ways and means to cripple critical online media will unmask the owners of online publications.
While online publications such as the Zambian Watchdog and Zambia Reports are blocked in Zambia, the PF government is spending sleepless nights over them especially that their articles can still be accessed on Facebook and proxy websites.
A statement by press officer Patricia Litiya says Kapeya’s visit is a State Department supported and will focus on the Freedom of Information Act, its implementation and its role in supporting democracy.
According to Litiya – a former ZNBC newscaster – Kapeya Kapeya is expected to hold talks with senior US government officials from the Department of State, Bureau of Democracy, Human rights and Labor, Department of Justice and the Reporter Committee for Freedom of the Press.
The US government has adequately been briefed by various bodies and individuals about Zambia’s rising human rights abuses under the Patriotic Front government.
Litiya also announced that the minister and his delegation are expected to visit some Print Media houses in Pensacola, Florida. Zambia Reports hopes Kapeya will learn a lot from his visit to the first world country and its tolerance to extreme online media, among others forms of free expression, which him and his boss are failing to contend but heavily enjoyed during their time in the opposition.