The naked attack upon Kwese TV by the ruling party, through the Broadcasting Association of Zimbabwe (BAZ), is another stark reminder, on the eve of elections, just how lecherously power hungry ZANU PF can be.
Kwese TV on Saturday gave a notice to its customers that it was stopping to broadcast pending the outcome of another court application by the BAZ which is against the existence of another broadcaster.
“We would like to inform you that the broadcasting of the Kwese TV Service has been temporarily suspended following an appeal to the Supreme Court by the Broadcasting Authority of Zimbabwe (BAZ).
“This appeal challenged the ruling which was issued in favour of Kwese TV by the High Court last week.
“We have approached the High Court on urgent basis for permission to continue broadcasting pending the determination of the appeal in the High Court”, it said.
Even after the lesson that Econet should be to them, looking in retrospect at the years that the same government spent fighting to block its creation and later on how Econet’s derivatives are now central to various transactions, they are back to their sadomasochistic tendencies and erecting barriers to the coming in of a new media player.
This is what they have done in radio, where the existing plurality of stations has been created to give the false impression of open airwaves, in an industry that is actually filled with ZANU institutions and members.
Former Russian leader Mikhail Gorbachev once stated that ‘the media is our chief ideological weapon’ and that truism is well known to the apparatchiks in the factionally ridden party.
They are trying to make sure that in the run-up to the 2018 elections all we shall be seeing on the satirically named Dead BC (the Zimbabwe Broadcasting Association), will be the rallies and speeches from the ZANU party.
ZBC has never hidden its one-sided and biased reportage with airspace afforded to the opposition coming in the form of attacks and derisive referrals that don’t advance their cause.
All the President’s empty Youth Interface rallies with their comic assemblage of the ranting and the tedious, were reported extensively on ZBC whilst the few opposition rallies are never shown or referred to on the broadcaster.
It’s thus apparent the BAZ is colluding with the ruling party to stifle the emergence of an alternative to the one sided narrative of its ungifted baby. Kwese TV for all its shortcomings, (it has no clear local content focused channel on its roster) still provides the foundation for a new ideological driver.
Kwese TV is the shimmering promise of something new upon the broadcasting horizon and roused from its murky cavern of dour programming, safe in the knowledge of no foe, BAZ is vainly looking to stifle progress to defend the soporific pill that is ZBC.
As a private broadcaster one never knows what next Kwese TV is going to do. It may open up a political channel where MDC-T rallies are aired, we may suddenly be afforded real news that reveal what ZBC hides by pretending ignorance or we may be afforded the chance to hear truth not the current nauseating propaganda.
Politics, aside ZBC programming is just murky goo canned in national colours and the chance for an alternative is always welcome.