The restrictions of the freedom of speech in the media worries the Zambian Bishops.
Malawi, August, 4th, 2017 (Radio Vatican). The Government of Malawi through the Ministry of Information, Communication and Technology has hailed Catholic media houses and its practitioners for striving to advance evangelization and development. The government has since pledged its support.
Nicholas Dausi, the minister responsible, made the commitment in the town of Karonga, Sunday, after touring Tuntufye FM, a regional Catholic radio station belonging to the Diocese of Karonga. Later, the Minister attended the Eucharistic Celebration at St Mary’s Catholic Parish as part of the 51st Communications Sunday celebrations for the Catholic Church in Malawi.
Dausi challenged Catholic media houses to be more professional and not only broadcast pessimistic news. “We should not thrive on bad news or something that is defamatory to our colleagues. Using Church media is crucial for the evangelization drive,” said Dausi who is also a Catholic.
He pointed out that the government would work hand in hand with Catholic media houses and that they would offer any support for them to grow and provide better services to the nation. “I am impressed with the way Tuntufye FM of Karonga diocese is doing. They are doing fine, and we will support them,” he said.
Bishop Martin Mtumbuka of Karonga Diocese who presided over the World Communications Day Mass said the Catholic Church is grateful to God for the various tools of communication being used to spread the Gospel. He challenged Catholic media to be more professional in the execution of their functions. “I would like to challenge our media houses and those working in these (media) houses to be more professional. We thank God for the gift of all communication tools. However, we are challenging ourselves to use them effectively. We can do much better than what we are doing with our television stations, radio stations and newspapers,” said Bishop Mtumbuka.
He said Catholic media houses should be a source of hope by highlighting the country’s development agenda and also by promoting programmes on the Catechism of the Catholic Church. “Let us offer the message of faith for the glory of God and the development of this nation. We are the ones to champion this, and this can be done based on the way we do things. Let’s do things in a coordinated manner and be innovative,” he said.
At the same occasion, Episcopal Conference of Malawi Bishop-Chair for Social Communications and Research, George Tambala spoke on the message of Pope Francis’ for the Church’s 51st World Communications Day. The message calls for a culture of constructive information at the service of truth. “Pope Francis challenges us all to break the various circle of anxiety and stem the spiral of fear that results from a constant focus on bad news such as war, terrorism, scandals and all sorts of human failure,” said Bishop Tambala.
The national celebration of the World Communications Day held in Karonga attracted the presence of all the Diocesan Communication Secretaries, Association of Catholic Journalists in Malawi representatives, the Principal Secretary in the Ministry of Information, Communication and Technology, Justin Saidi also attended.
Some of Malawi’s Catholic media include the Episcopal Conference’s own Social Communications and Research Commission; Radio Maria Malawi; Radio Alinafe; Tigabane Radio; Tuntufye FM; Luntha Television, Montfort and Likuni Press.