MISA condemns ban on live coverage

Misa Malawi

… Urges radio and TV stations to unite

MISA Malawi says Malawi Communications Regulatory Authority’s (MACRA) ban on live broadcasts is ill-timed and an ambush on the broadcasters.

The media body said this on Tuesday after MACRA stated that no broadcaster shall conduct a live broadcast without the aid of a delay machine.

Misa Malawi
Ndanga: signed the statement

MISA Malawi chairperson Teresa Ndanga in a statement said the ban is a deliberate ploy to limit media freedom and freedom of expression.

She noted that broadcasters were not informed about the need to use a delay machine or given a timeframe within which to acquire the delay machines.

“Otherwise, we feel the directive prohibiting live broadcasts is an ambush as none of the broadcasters MISA Malawi has spoken to knew about the regulations,” Ndanga said.

The MISA Malawi chairperson also asked MACRA to be clear on whether the requirement for a delay machine extends to live presentation of news bulletins or other live presentations on radio and TV stations.

“We would also like to seek clarity on the relationship between the current ban and the suspension of phone-in programmes that MACRA effected on June 7, 2019. Does it mean those broadcasters with the delay machine can resume phone-in programmes?” Ndanga said.

Ndanga then called on broadcasters to unite in promoting and defending the broadcasting landscape as well as media freedom and freedom of expression.