Police in the Zambian capital Lusaka have launched an investigation to
find who took pictures of a woman giving birth
outside the University Teaching Hospital (UTH) during a recent health
workers's strike, according to an alert from Misa.
Investigations into the matter commenced following President BandaÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s directive to law enforcement agencies to probe the matter and bring the culprit to book.
Commissioner of police Grapheal Musamba told the Times of Zambia that law enforcement officers opened the docket on Wednesday last week just after President Banda expressed disgust at the person whom he described as having taken a photo of his own mother giving birth.
And the women movement in the country has reacted angrily to The Post Newspapers circulation of the picture of the woman in childbirth, saying it is a violation of the womanÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s privacy and dignity.
In a letter to The Post Newspaper editor and chairperson of the Press Freedom Committee of the Post Chansa Kabwela, the Non ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â‚¬Å“ Governmental Organization Coordinating Council (NGOCC) said it was shocked and disgusted at the pictures.
NGOCC board chairperson, Marian Munyinda said in the letter dated June 12, 2009 to Ms. Kabwela that the Post as a media house was expected to be guided by ethics and moral judgment.
ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…â€œWe have been extremely shocked and disgusted at the pictures you have circulated of a woman in childbirth. Not only is it a gross violation of the womanÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s privacy and dignity but more so of the sanctity of the human life,ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚Â reads the letter.
And the Zambia United Front chairman Mike Kaira demanded an apology from The Post Newspaper and all those responsible for publishing pornographic pictures which were offensive to the womenfolk in the name of political journalism.Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â
But following the protest by NGOCC, Ms Kabwela on June 15, 2009 wrote a response letter to Ms Muyinda in which she apologized for having offended the women movement by sending the pictures. Ms. Kabwela said that the pictures were not taken by The Post but by the husband of the same woman who complained that her wifeÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s experience should not be allowed to happen to any other woman.
The Post managing editor Amos Malupenga featured on MUVI TV news were he dismissed reports that the newspaper has been circulating pictures of a woman in labour saying that the falsehoods were being circulated by people and organizations with a malicious agenda against the newspaper.