THE media must base its reporting on issues despite their editorial independence rather than resorting to personal attacks on people entrusted with national responsibility, the Press Association of Zambia (PAZA) has said.
PAZA president Andrew Sakala challenged media practitioners in the country to carry out their duties in a professional manner by engaging in issue-based reporting as opposed to personal attacks.
He was reacting to a statement attributed to 4th Revolution president Eric Chanda who was quoted as saying late president Michael Sata would be shocked to see how President Lungu has developed a pot belly within a short time of being in office and the expensive suits the president had acquired,
Mr. Sakala observed that while there were differences in editorial policies from one media organisation to the other, there was need for practitioners to realise that they owed citizens objective reporting devoid of character assassination.
“Our position as PAZA is that we want to see all media organisations in the country are practising issue-based reporting and not character assassination. However, as a result of differences in editorial policies, this can be a big debate on what issue-based reporting is and which one is not.
“However, if the issue is on the moral aspect of the leader where you want to bring out the wrongs that a leader is doing, there is nothing wrong with that. But where your take it personal by resorting to attacking that person to an extent that he fails to deliver, I think that becomes a problem,” Mr. Sakala said.