The newly-minted President Lazarus Chakwera’s acting Press Secretary, Anthony Kasunda has challenged journalists in the country to always striving to thrive serving the Malawian by reporting issues affecting the lives of the masses accurately and truthfully.
Kaunda, an experienced journalist and a Public Relations connoisseur, made the appeal Monday during a State House bi-weekly press briefing at Kamuzu Palace State Residence in Malawi’s capital, Lilongwe when he officially took the mantle as President Chakwera’s spokesperson.
Said Kasunda:” I would like to avail myself as the acting Press Secretary for the president. Colleagues, I am one of you and I pledge to serve you diligently and with respect. I am available and at your service 24 hours.
“But I would like to ask of you to always do your duty with a good sense of responsibility as you have an enormous task in serving the Malawian people and I implore you all to use this platform productively. Let us use these press briefings to ask real and pertinent issues affecting Malawians needing the president’s attention.”
Kasunda said he was owes his gratitude to President Chakwera for trusting him with such a huge responsibility to serve the State President and Malawians.
“I would like thank the president for giving me this great opportunity to serve him and the people of Malawi. I am so grateful and I promise to use my experience and skills obtained through over the past two decades,” he said, adding;
“There are a lot of qualified and deserving people out there who could have been considered for the job, but it pleased the president to trust me with this noble responsibility and I pledge my loyalty to the president and to the people of Malawi,” said Kasunda.
Kasunda further asked the media practitioners in the country to avoid what he described as newsrooms “sexy and juicy stories”, which are only half-truths.
He said: “With social media buzzing with all sorts of false and fake news these days. I humbly urge you my colleagues to desist from taking such information into the mainstream media as that destroys the very fabric of professionalism”
Kasunda, a former investigative journalist for both The Daily Times and The Nation newspapers and recently Blantyre City Council Public Relations Manager said the Malawian leader, President Chakwera is committed to uphold media freedoms in the country.
He cited Chakwera’s swift action to operationalisation of access of information law into full actionable use.
Said Kasunda: “President Chakwera is the most open and free-spirited president Malawi has ever had. He let everyone knows what is going on and as journalists this is a great opportunity but we need to use this productively by getting the information Malawians want.”
Parliament passed AIT bill in 2016 and since that time the law was never been in action.
The passing of the bill was considered a huge step in the 12-year long process in which various stakeholders, led by MISA Malawi, campaigned for legislation on access to information.
Kasunda, challenged journalists to raise the bar and prove to the world that Malawi has the best media by asking pertinent questions on issues affecting the citizenry.
Introducing Kasunda to the media and Malawians, Sean Kampondeni, State House Communications Director and President Chakwera’s executive Secretary described Kasunda as a decorated and dedicated seasoned professional journalist with vast experience and a reputable Public Relations Officer with quality services.
Until this appointment, Kasunda was Public Relations Manager for Blantyre City Council and has replaced Brian Banda, who is undergoing further studies in the Republic of China.