Opinion

REFLECTION: Gerard Shawa’s Temperament And The Power Of Mass Media.

By. Hon. Sensio Banda.

Allow me to open my discourse with a quote, “Whoever controls the media, controls the mind” by Jim Morrison. To consolidate the above school of thought and for my audience to appreciate my perspective as regards the subject matter, allow me to give a backdrop.

During the early 20th century epoch, developing mass media technologies, such as radio and television stations, were credited with an almost irresistible power to mold an audience’s beliefs, cognition, and behaviours according to the communicators’ will. Therefore, the influence of mass media has an effect on many aspects of human life, which might include voting in a certain way, individual views and beliefs, or skewing a person’s knowledge of a specific topic due to being provided with selected information. Thus, it goes without saying that Media is The Fourth Estate or Fourth Power, for it indeed wields significant indirect social influence on people.

It’s a rule of the thumb that as the media applies itself to its mandate; to inform and entertain, it must do so with objectivity, magnanimity, honest and patriotic to national cause. This is so because the media shapes public perceptions on a variety of important issues, both through the information that is dispensed through them, and through the interpretations they place upon this information. On the other hand, the government has the responsibility to partner with the media by creating an enabling environment for the sector to thrive and also ensure that the media does not become the axis of evil in triggering nation social unrest, as was the case with Rwandan genocide.

In my own view, if this sector has to effectively support sustainable development and national security, we need captains of the industry whose disposition is not easily given to emotions under any circumstance. We need men and women who are calm and collected and who do not tend to get mad easily; individuals with calm temperament and indeed patriotic to their nation. Much as I understand that private media house’s underlining objective is maximization of profit. But when duty calls for a noble cause such as the call that was made by government to partner with media houses to disseminate periodic information to the nation on the deadly Covid19. This was the moment intuitive patriotism to one’s nation was supposed to set in.

Alas, on the material day, when the PS in the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting was engaging the media houses on the need to partner with government on Covid19,what was Mr. Shawa’s reaction? Was he objective, magnanimous and patriotic? Nay! emotional outburst. Indeed, his temperament and character disposition is not only a threat to Prime TV business interests, more so to national security. I say so because media being the Forth Estate, it is unthinkable that Mr. Shawa is at the summit of power of Prime TV, a private media house, with reasonable viewership. I suppose the newsroom has a hard time to ensure that the news items or indeed programs are skewed to his liking or his master’s biddings.

It is a frightening thought considering that next year we are having general elections. In Rwanda, it was emotional characters of privately owned radio stations such as Radio Télévision Libre des Milles Collines, who triggered the Rwandan genocide.

What we do not need right now is an ill-tempered person to preside over a private media house which has a reasonable viewership countrywide. Mr. Shawa is a weak link not only to Prime TV business interests, but to national security even as we approach the 2021 general elections. Prime TV shareholders must make strategic resolves as it relates to Prime TV business interests and government must continue to foster media related measures and resolutions that will guarantee national security as we approach 2021 general elections.

Someone might be asking, wait a minute, you are nailing the brother, you don’t kick a man when he is down, besides the man apologised. Yes indeed the man apologised, for it is said “to error is human to forgive is divine”. However, the forgiveness part I will leave it to the relevant office, which is handling the matter. But even after apologising, it is not like his ill tampered temperament or disposition has vaporised overnight. The legitimate issue of his temperament I have raised, even after apologising, still remains a national security threat as we approach 2021 general elections.

Above all, let me categorically state that, I am not crucifying the brother, but rather letting him know that he owes the nation a duty and responsibility. His trending reaction could have been in a boardroom meeting but if his temperament is not restrained and the same disposition exhibited on TV by himself or his master, on sensitive election matters during 2021 general elections, then boom! Social unrest. I hope lessons have been learnt. For it is said “Wisdom comes from making mistakes, having the courage to face them, and make adjustments moving forward based upon the knowledge acquired through those experiences.” ― Ken Poirot.

Lastly, allow me to say that, we have got only one Zambia, in which we are all interdependent, interconnected, have a shared community and future, we must endeavour to be patriotic to our country by acting responsibly for the betterment of mother Zambia.

“The struggle continues; victory is certain”.

About The Author: Hon. Sensio Banda is the Member of Parliament for Kasenengwa Constituency in Eastern Province.

Copyright © 2020 ZR.

 

11 Comments

  1. Jms

    Its true a concerned person has to be saluted according to his or her nice views, I respect all narrated. Now it will depend on how the officials will view the situation but in reality a situation occurs in order for those against and not against to give their views for God now to judge who is speaking and doing the true and right thing.

  2. Ken Poirot

    Hon. Sensio Banda, I have no knowledge or context as to the content of your well written article but I appreciate your passion, enthusiasm, freedom of expression, and love for your country.

    I wish for you to realize your vision for Zambia, namely as you stated, “one Zambia, in which we are all interdependent, interconnected, have a shared community and future…acting responsibly for the betterment of mother Zambia.”

    May God bless you and the pursuit of this vision for your community and country.

  3. Skb

    Well articulated piece Honorable.Those with ears, let them hear. The man has not only embarrassed himself but the whole nation including his ” partners”. Isn’t it amazing how people the world over are sacrificing not only huge monies but time and some even their own lives as the war against COVID-19 is being fought from all fronts. This man’s show of pomposity was simply DISGUSTING!!!!!

  4. Chumbu

    Well articulated Honourable.
    Lets remember how Prime TV was given capacity building after Sesheke by election ‘war movie’. Nothing has changed after the final warning.
    Prime TV has been inciting the public during the gassing and we watched Zambian burning each other with tyres in the neck.
    Prime TV does not show the viewers questions which they pause to their sources. What they show viewers are responses which always suggest that Prime Journalists pause leading questions which are critical to govt. Prime TV Editors allow raw data including guests who slander and use hate speech on fellow citizens who have no access to their station at that particular time. In short, Prime TV incites citizens against each other. It operates like an opposition Political party station when infact not.
    The reason why some political parties are not given the platform on ZNBC is because their language is full of hate and slander which goes against our national values.
    Finally those boys who analyse news in the evening by opposing, slandering and sconning govt officials who are their parents only shows the character of the owner of the station who pays them for what they do. The station is irresponsible and can bring this country in flames. Age for positions of CEO also matters.

  5. Chendabusiku

    This article is well written and a timely warning to Govt. At first, I just head verble presentations when the minister of information and broadcasting announced ( Hon Dora Siliya) that they would not deal with prime TV because Mr shawa refused to air sensitization information to the public. Then, I heard that one a Mr Shawa refused the noble task to assist Govt. to air sensitization messages regarding the outbreak of Covid 19. I was actually taken aback to hear that a Zambian would refuse to assist his own country and the public at large that have given him the business to be who he thinks he is. But later I saw the video with full outbursts of one a Mr Gerad Shawa my my! I could not believe my eyes and ears for what I saw and head. For the man of his caliber to behave in the manner that he did, he (Mr G. Shawa) he needed to not only to truly apologise but to be truly very ashamed of his behaviour because it does not befit a man of his caliber. He truly does not seem to belong to the class we have thought he belonged to. Whatever his upbringing or educational background that cannot be an acceptable excuse.

  6. Alisha

    Covid 19 has shaken the entire world,while we put up measures to avoid this virus from spreading further, let’s take this burden to the Lord in prayer.We should not call for National Prayers when things are worse as it is our custom in Zambia.

  7. Kambonga !

    My thoughts on Mr. Shawa’s outburst and later on apology is simple; sorry after death? True the man apologized for putting his natural instincts first- profit and flexing his muscles for being a media “power”. However, I doubt if he is or has been remorseful… When you say “I’m sorry!” you begin by being contrite. Shawa should have unleashed the COVID-19 adverts for the Zambian people and written to Malupenga that he could only do so much for free up to a given day since he has people to pay and high
    bills to service. Today people are saying “He apologized! He apologized!” So what? Apology response in the pending box! This being a Christian Nation, when you steal all you must say is “Sorry, I robbed you.” My question is what next? ANSWER…take and give back the loot plus interest! Shawa must in action show remorse.

  8. Zikomo

    Prime tv is a cancer 2 our peace of the nation let us treat it b4 it sprayed to other media houses. Is prime tv media house or facebook house. Hon sensio banda words my sound wrong bcoz he is pf member but he leave govt zambia wil praise him as a hero. COVID-19 Is a danger 2 owners of prime tv and mainly poor zambian’s 4 denying them information wareness ON THE VIRUS. Topstar is govt partner and same with DSTV So u deny govt request same as u refuse zambian’s call. IF U BROUGHT TOPSTAR DECODER and u want refund frm the company better u resale 2 the thirdpart than asking 4 refund kikiki…. Politics is not bad human being in govt and opposition parties in waiting are the same

  9. Saimbwende

    SHAWA and his prime tv are taking of the freedoms that we have as a country remember Namakando Mmembe Post he became a law to himself to the point where he even stopped paying Caeser what was Caeser’s.
    Namakando became Mr know it all he wrote his useless articles with impunity every politician was tamed and afraid except fo R.B. the ngoni bull who decided to take Namakando on but the compromised cobra may his departed soul rest in eternal peace rescued the Post rug.
    The pf went to bed with a disgraced paper bully that bullied everyone with insults even this under 5 munshebwa was not spared.
    SHAWA I hope you are paying taxes don’t expect sympathy when you will be caught with your tax pants down.
    Namakando Mmembe thought he was the smartest ,knowledgeable,bravest but he didnt know was that there will always people who are smarter than one may think they are come to think of it Mmembe is even a politician today people he classified in his small brain as hynas and jackals alas today he is one of them what a shame the chickens have truly come home and to top it up all he fought over who is a true socialist with his closet and fellow minion known as kamimbya the former uncouth sg another big headed know it all pimbili mano nzelu niza eka. Today kamimbya has his own version of socialist party and Namakando post has their own type with musumali these criminals are not patriotic they will show as if they have morals when they are so bankrupt in morality.
    Now this division of theirs kamimbya & Namakando has made the john white dot scot to be confused he doesn’t know who to follow because he was a loyal useful idiot to these 2 ego centric maniacs so the only way out of this quagmire for the Zambezi or is it the chitokoloki born son of a missionary turned politician was to turn to this brainless economist know it all called hakanyoko hakaunka you can clearly see that these lackeys have no principles they will support any one as long as it satisfies their shallow demented foolish egos so ba shawa I hope you have learned something even if it’s little let politicians fight among themselves you are a businessman don’t pick sides be in the middle so that you nature your outfit called prime tv you can’t afford all these unnecessary battles with the govt ok how much have milupi & hakanyoko given you to fight these wars nothing bit lip service support any way you shawa will be wise to stick to your track business

  10. Saimbwende

    SHAWA and his prime tv are taking the freedoms that we enjoy in this country for granted remember Namakando Mmembe Post he became a law to himself to the point where he even stopped paying Caeser what was Caeser’s.
    Namakando became Mr know it all he wrote his useless articles with impunity every politician was tamed and afraid except for R.B. the ngoni bull who decided to take Namakando on but the compromised King Cobra may his departed soul rest in eternal peace came to the rescue of the Post rug.
    The pf went to bed with a disgraced paper bully that bullied everyone with insults even this under 5 munshebwa was not spared. He was called a bitter tribalist until this midget economist bended and tolled the line of Namakando he ended up apologising ahh apology my foot hakanyoko why did you apologise to Mmembe is it not this big headed Namakando that owed you an apology? for labelling you a seller of mines & parastatles
    SHAWA I hope you are paying taxes don’t expect sympathy when you will be caught with your tax pants down.
    Namakando Mmembe thought he was the smartest ,knowledgeable,bravest but what he didnt realise was that he could fool people for some time but not always come to think of it Mmembe is even a politician today people he classified in his small brain as hynas and jackals alas today he is one of them what a shame the chickens have truly come home and to top it up all he fought over who is a true socialist with his closet ally and fellow minion known as kamimbya the former uncouth sg another big headed know it all pimbili mano nzelu niza eka. Today kamimbya has his own version of socialist party and Namakando post has their own type with musumali these criminals are not patriotic they will show as if they have morals when they are so bankrupt in morality.
    Now this division of theirs kamimbya & Namakando has made the john white dot scot to be confused he doesn’t know who to follow because he was a loyal useful idiot to these 2 ego centric maniacs so the only way out of this quagmire for the Zambezi or is it the chitokoloki born son of a missionary turned politician was to turn to this brainless economist know it all called hakanyoko hakaunka you can clearly see that these lackeys have no principles they will support any one as long as it satisfies their shallow demented foolish egos so ba shawa I hope you have learned something even if it’s little let politicians fight among themselves you are a businessman don’t pick sides be in the middle so that you nature your outfit called prime tv you can’t afford all these unnecessary battles with the govt ok how much have milupi & hakanyoko given you to fight these wars nothing but lip service support any way you shawa will be wise to stick to your track business .

  11. Angoni

    Its a pity that people do not learn from the past. If prime TV does not change the manner it carries on itself in terms presentation of its programming because of Mr G Shawa this station will soon find itself into the dust bin of history. Please Mr Shawa leave politician to play politics, don’t be a weak soul to be used by HH, Movie TV tried it, it failed and the post News Paper Had grown wings behaved in similar way the rest is history about the news papers. Leave HH to fight his battles alone otherwise you will be like a toilet paper.

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