Veteran journalist and media trainer Edem Djokotoe has weighed in on the case of former FAZ president Kalusha Bwalya whose two-year ban has been lifted by FIFA on appeal. Djokotoe who is better known from his popular columns Soul to Soul and Mind-Over Matter in the defunct Post Newspaper has added context to the Great Kalu saga. The no-nonsense scribe wound back the clock to Great Kalu’s reign as FAZ president that saw a media witch-hunt form part of his administrative legacy.
FULL WRITE UP:
Let the champagne corks pop, but as for me and my household, we will remember that under the tenure of a certain FAZ boss. a number of local journalists were banned from attending FAZ-organised matches and blacklisted because he wasn’t happy with their coverage. Matimba Nkonje, Sydney Mungala, Kalumiana Kalumiana come immediately to mind. Some of them were arrested and charged with espionage and criminal trespass by the cop in charge of Chipolopolo security, Sylvester Shipolo who sued me for writing about the ridiculous charge and the fact that he’d been instructed to haul me to court to teach me a lesson or two in humility. The journalists were arrested for being at Levy Stadium to watch the national team play a practice match against a Division Two side. Espionage? Criminal trespass–at a public facility? Negro, please! The suit didn’t have legs or crutches to stand on, let alone a wheelchair to be wheeled in and I never saw a minute in court and the case never went anywhere. If anything, it illustrated the brazenness of people who abuse power they think they have.
The Constitution gives citizens freedom of movement and someone thinks he can take that freedom away and make you believe you cannot attend a soccer match held at any Zambian stadium because he says so! Keegan Mumba, a man employed to coach a premier division team, was banned from attending matches because he openly criticised how players for the national team were being picked. One thing all this banning back and forth teaches us is that karma is a female dog from Nakadoli.
If you don’t believe me, go back and read my six-part series “Of Bans, Blacklists and Bola” published in the Post when the paper still existed. Now that people know how painful it is to be banned by forces more powerful than you are, affecting your ability and capacity to earn money, maybe we will see a lot more sobriety and maturity in how we deal with people we do not agree with.
Good morning, folks.