Minister of Housing and Infrastructure Development Ronald Chitotela says Zambian journalists like stealing food especially chicken pieces when they are invited for functions.
Chitotela made the accusation when he officiated at the signing ceremony with an Egyptian company selling the so So called ‘elite’ homes in Zambia.
“I hope chickens won’t go missing here because the media is fond of stealing chickens,” said Chitotela from nowhere.
After realising that his statement angered journalists instead of apologising, he connived with some chap from ZNBC to pretend that the statement was a joke at his expense.
The minister’s attack on journalists comes barely a week after they observed media freedom day.
A survey done by various international organisations show that Zambian journalists work under deplorable conditions with most using public transport to cover events. Some journalist walk to cover events. A huge number of journalists work as correspondents, meaning they are paid according to the number of their articles published; but payment, despite being low, does not come easy. Journalists who work in radio stations are paid as low as K400 per month in some cases.
Yet, and despite these conditions, they get the stories out.
Government ministers like Chitotela know these conditions under which journalists in Zambia work and maybe that is what he had in mind when he said they like stealing food at