Hakainde and his apology – The Post

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Hakainde Hichilema

Hakainde Hichilema

The Post Newspaper has responded to the apology by opposition UPND president Hakainde Hichilema on its Monday Editorial comment

Hakainde’s apology to The Post: what does it mean?

On Friday, The Post carried a story of Hakainde Hichilema, the president of opposition UPND, apologising for the insulting statements and abusive actions thrown at the newspaper.

“We have obviously misunderstood them in the past and attacked them unnecessarily and this is regrettable. We want to leave that in the past,” said Hakainde.

We have no problem with Hakainde and the UPND. They are not the first ones to insult and abuse The Post. UNIP did the same in the run-up to the 1991 elections. Successive MMD leaders and governments have done the same. Michael Sata accused The Post of having rigged the 2006 elections in favour of Levy Mwanawasa. The Post sued him for defamation. The most important thing is to try and understand why this has been the case.

Our own and only explanation is that genuine goodness is threatening to those at the opposite end of the moral spectrum. UNIP turned against The Post because it threatened its 27-year hold on power. UNIP felt The Post was supporting the opposition MMD. It didn’t take long for the MMD in power to turn against The Post. And here, the problem was that the MMD had started to depart from the democratic principles that in the first place made them appear to be on the same side as The Post. Corruption set in. And with corruption, everything went wrong. Corruption fights back and The Post was the target of all corrupt elements in this country.

The problems with the UPND and its current leadership revolved around the regional character of this party and its leadership. The Post has consistently pointed out the dangers of regional and tribal politics and once labelled the UPND a Bantustan party. Despite the facts being there, the leadership of the UPND, instead of addressing their deficiencies, turned their hate on The Post.
And in the run-up to the 2011 elections, the UPND got into an unholy alliance with Rupiah Banda against the Patriotic Front and Michael. And yet not very long ago before this, the UPND leadership had been accusing Rupiah of being corrupt. In that alliance, the UPND had unlimited access to state-owned media coverage and didn’t need The Post. This got to their heads and they started denouncing The Post at every opportunity they had. And Hakainde made it very clear that he didn’t need Post coverage. But despite this declaration, The Post continued to cover him. But the more The Post continued to cover him, the more Hakainde got virulent in his attack of The Post. He called the editors of The Post all sorts of names and accused them of all sorts of things. They could have decided to take legal action against him, but they let him get away with it.

Briefly, this is where we are coming from. We have no issues with Hakainde and the UPND just as much as we do not have issues with any other politician or political party.

One doesn’t need to share our views, to agree with us or to be our friend to be covered by The Post. It was not us who decided not to cover Hakainde; it was Hakainde himself who decided not to be covered by The Post because at that time, he had the Zambia Daily Mail, Times of Zambia and ZNBC television and radio at his disposal. He doesn’t have these institutions today to cover him and he needs The Post to do so. We have no difficulties covering Hakainde. Every view that needs to be heard must be heard. We don’t think even his apology is really something that is borne out of genuine contrition. We believe it is a product of political expedience in the quest for power. But who are we to judge and reject his apology? What right do we have to do so?

We forgive Hakainde and his friends not because we want anything from them. Of course there are all sorts of pledges from him about the need to support The Post. The Post has never survived or thrived on the back of a political party. The Post survives because of the individual support of the Zambian people who every day buy the newspaper and advertise in it. The support from a political party is actually dangerous for The Post because politicians change with power. They are good to The Post when they want coverage from it. But when they get into power and The Post starts to question their policies, decisions and actions; The Post starts to challenge their corruption and abuses, it immediately turns into an enemy that must be undermined, humiliated and if possible annihilated. This is the situation The Post finds itself in today with the current leadership of the Patriotic Front. It is the same situation it will find itself in with the leadership of the next government, regardless of who wins the next elections. The Post has never been a favour-seeker from politicians or anyone else for that matter. It supports causes that are in line with its principles and opposes those which it finds to be not in the interest of the common good.

There is no politician or political party in this country that can ever claim to have extended a favour to The Post and The Post has taken that favour. The Post has always remained independent, making its own decisions and choices. The mistakes The Post has made, which are many, are its own and not something dictated to it by anyone else. Today The Post has to bear the brunt of the tyranny of this very corrupt Patriotic Front regime of Edgar Lungu. Again, The Post has not turned to anyone, other than the Zambian people, for help. The Post is there today and will be there tomorrow not because of the support of any political party but because of the Zambian people’s support. This is what matters. This is what counts. And this is what The Post bends to.

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12 Responses to Hakainde and his apology – The Post

  1. HH made a very big mistake to apologize to post. Iam not a UPND supporter but with all fairness I think it is the post who are supposed to apologize to Mr hichilema and to UPND party leadership for calling as buntustan. HH Mbuya please VJ will destroy you sir. HH Mbuya please don’t form an alliance with any political party. Just go alone so can be gloried when win elections or ealse you will loose if you work with the post. By kaka “mbuuya”

    chavama district
    February 1, 2016 at 11:51 pm
    Reply

    • I concur. It wasn’t necessary to apologise. For what? Fred Mmembe is one of the most corrupt and cunning people in Zambia hiding behind a newspaper. He has been determining who rules Zambia mostly using his newspaper. He likes hijacking presidents and once a president refuses to be hijacked, he unleashes the power of the pen against that president. Despite the fact that we can’t take away from him the good work that he does by exposing corruption and mis-governance by incumbent governments, he does it with him benefiting at the end of it like he benefited financially when he hijacked Sata. HH should stand his ground and call a spade a spade. Fred Mmembe has always found it useful to portray the people of southern province as “useless” so as to have his choice rule Zambia to his benefit. Do you remember that the Post has been in the habit of publicizing negative stories of rape, bestiality etc. in southern province up until recently when now the Post features a lot of the good voice and reason of southern province people? The master calculator has already calculated that HH has the highest chances of becoming president but he wants to package HH ascendancy to plot 1 as if it is only through the Post that he has managed just like he did with Sata. HH should man up and continue being independent as he has been all along.

      Henry
      February 2, 2016 at 7:17 am
      Reply

  2. Dear zambias I think HH made a very big mistake to apologize to post. Iam not a UPND supporter but with all fairness I think it is the post who are supposed to apologize to Mr hichilema and to UPND party leadership for calling as buntustan. HH Mbuya please VJ will destroy you sir. HH Mbuya please don’t form an alliance with any political party. Just go alone so can be gloried when win elections or ealse you will loose if you work with the post. By kaka “mbuuya”

    chavama district
    February 1, 2016 at 11:55 pm
    Reply

  3. UPND leader made a very big mistake to apologize to post. Iam not a UPND supporter but with all fairness I think it is the post who are supposed to apologize to Mr hichilema and to UPND party leadership for calling as buntustan. HH Mbuya please VJ will destroy you sir. HH Mbuya please don’t form an alliance with any political party. Just go alone so can be gloried when win elections or ealse you will loose if you work with the post. By kaka “mbuuya”

    chavama district
    February 1, 2016 at 11:58 pm
    Reply

  4. UPND leader made a very big mistake to apologize to post. Iam not a UPND supporter but with all fairness I think it is the post who are supposed to apologize to Mr hichilema and to UPND party leadership for calling as buntustan. HH Mbuya please VJ will destroy you sir. HH Mbuya please don’t form an alliance with any political party. Just go alone so can be gloried when win elections or ealse you will loose if you work with the post. By kaka “mbuuya”

    ziko
    February 2, 2016 at 12:01 am
    Reply

  5. HH did well to apologise. It is up to the post to take it or not. In fact before HH came on seen Fred Namakando M’Membe and his Post newspaper were not in good terms even with the UPND under A.K. Mazoka while he worked with Partrick Chisanga and Bob Sichinga and many other big guys who have decided to take low profile after my father, Sakwiba Sikota lost the presidential position in UPND at Mulungushi Conference to now leader and hopefully to be republican President after 11.08.2016. Yes, the media plays a big role in influencing voters as seen on how the very post manipulated the pact of PF and UPND which saw PF using the back of the post get one third of UPND and finally formed government under the late great liar and manipulator Michael Chilufya Sata.

    All I can advise UPND and HH in particular is to remain focused and campaign for the 11.08.2016 general elections. With or without the post coverage let the party do the best they can to win hearts of voters. The Post will make mistakes and they too can be forgiven just like any other institution can. But in all this one should NOT take advantage of the other. Today The Post is crying here and there at the hands of Edgar Lungu and his PF zealots. Yes, they may boast that they do not need help from anyone but down their hearts they know that they need assist of many voices including those from political parties otherwise they could have closed long time ago.

    Zambians want freedom from poverty that has been perpetuated somehow by decision makers which include the post newspaper. Let it be known that The Post need HH’s support much as he wants their support.

    Mainza
    February 2, 2016 at 7:01 am
    Reply

  6. People which step can HH do, cause the same Idiots ll say – HH did a great move and at the same time you say he made a mistake, stop being fools. Ask God to give us the next president.

    terkamj
    February 2, 2016 at 7:16 am
    Reply

  7. IF HH thinks and believes his wronged M’membe he should have done that privately and in person to M’membe. Since HH has apologised to M’membe, must he now apologise to every Zambian his wronged? Or perhaps HH is just trying to mend broken fences before he departs the political stage? Obvously, whatever happens ; 11,August 2016 we will see the last of HH the politician. Time is no longer on HH’s side.

    The observer
    February 2, 2016 at 9:30 am
    Reply

  8. Who in their right sense publishes an apology made to them if not to gain stupid mileage. HH Aapologized so what, if the post meant well they would have just ended up with the headline because which well meaning zambian doesn’t know HH had a point when he questioned the behavior of the post and it’s clear tribal reporting. HH didn’t in all fairness need to apologize but he did anyway. So whether genuine or not is not the issue. What history will record is that he apologised. However it must be made clear that the post needs UPND more than UPND needs it, the post has tried to campaign UPND but all in vain as the party continues to enjoy more and more support without the post.

    ZAMBIAN
    February 2, 2016 at 10:15 am
    Reply

  9. meant the post has tried to decampaingn UPND but all in vain.

    ZAMBIAN
    February 2, 2016 at 10:17 am
    Reply

  10. HH did a good thing to apologise because THE POST cant apologise they too stubborn.so to please a fool say yes or sorry.SO that those who are intelligent can differentiate a fool from a wise person.

    nyambe
    February 2, 2016 at 11:46 am
    Reply

  11. I am starting to think HH is not normal and I won’t vote in august because there is no one suitable for me to vote for .HH suffered beyond measure at the hands of the post but the man foolishly made an unnecessary apology.HH is not the right man to lead upnd.sakwiba sikota was going to be a better candidate.

    Bingo
    February 2, 2016 at 5:19 pm
    Reply

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