KELVIN CHONGO, Lusaka
MINISTER of Information and Broadcasting Services Kampamba Mulenga says Government under the leadership of President Lungu values a free press.
She has also said that Government will soon call for a national meeting of the media to dialogue.
Ms Mulenga said Government recognises the role that a free press plays in national development.
She was speaking in Lusaka yesterday when United States Ambassador Eric Schultz paid a courtesy call on her at her office.
â€œAs Government our mandate is simply to promote press freedom so that the media operates freely. We have levelled the media playing field and we will soon be having an indaba where we will call all media in the nation,â€ Ms Mulenga said.
She said both the public and privately-owned media will be part of a round-table dialogue in a spirit of national reconciliation.
Ms Mulenga said the meeting will, among other things, discuss how the media in the country can play its full and rightful role in national development.
She urged the US government to help Zambia build the capacity of media practitioners.
Ms Mulenga said Government is making steady progress in its quest to complete the second and third phases of the digital migration process within the next 18 months.
And Mr Schultz said a free press is important in a democracy because it helps to bring people together to foster national development as well as national reconciliation.
He said the US government is keen to supplement Governmentâ€™s efforts in building capacity of Zambian media practitioners.
â€œWe have observed that some journalists in some media outlets lack journalism skills. We have assisted the Zambian government in the past to build capacity in media practitioners and we would like to continue along this path so that the journalists can continue to gain the necessary skills,â€ he said.
Mr Schultz commended Zambia for maintaining its status as a beacon of peace and democracy in Africa.