I wish to respond to a story that appeared in The Newtimes of Monday, November, 8 concerning practicing journalists and the law of defamation.
I strongly believe that if government repeals some articles that make defamation a criminal offence, journalists would work more freely and continue to expose wrongdoers in our society.
I am a law abiding citizen and I wouldn’t want to see rules being violated in our country, but I believe, press freedom is vital in any society and stringent laws, such as defamation, make the work of our journalists quite difficult.
Some government officials deny journalists access to information even when it is in the public interest. Such people who don’t want to give information to journalists will of course try to resist the idea of revising the law.
Indeed, like journalists argued this week, press freedom is necessary since the media acts as a platform for public debate and also scrutinizes public officials and policies.
Like what Nelson Mandela said in 1992, a critical, independent and investigative media is the lifeblood of any democracy.