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Here we comeBy Diggers Editor on 2 Mar 2017
Journalism can never be silent because that is its greatest virtue. It must speak, and speak immediately, while the echoes of wonder, the claims of triumph and the signs of horror are still in the air. That’s what Henry Grunwald teaches us.
Indeed, there is nothing we can speak better than journalism, and we do speak it fluently. We would like to speak now while the claims of triumph, signs of uncertainty and the fear of totalitarianism is growing in the Republic of Zambia.
Our voice is new, full of hope, determination and purpose. We are sure you will appreciate it and we will do our best to give you reason for supporting us. We are also not naïve to the fact that, for whatever reason, you may choose to dislike our voice, and it’s within your rights to ignore it. You can choose not to hear us, but we ask that you protect our constitutional right to speak.
We want to be part of the political, economic and social life circle of this country because we cherish it so dearly. We are eager to amplify the voice of those who cherish our country as much as we do, be they from the ruling party or the opposition.
The Patriotic Front may pride itself in running a government with a functioning executive, an effective legislature and a firm judiciary, but no government survives in the absence of a critical Fourth Estate. Even flawless governments in developed countries appreciate the role of a critical press. Our government is far from perfect, especially in the face of political divisions, budget deficits and dwindling foreign investments, and it should embrace a free press more now than ever before in order to inspire accountability and donor confidence.
That is why we cannot stop thinking about the state of the media in Zambia, because the less you think about your oppression, the more you tolerate it. The less you think about the danger of corruption, the more you accept it as a normal state of affairs. To become free, you first have to be acutely aware that you are a slave. In Zambia, we are satisfied with the pronouncements made against corruption, but that is only because we are not brave enough to realise that corruption and outright theft are extending the ever-widening gap between the poor majority and the rich few.
We are made to believe that President Edgar Lungu is fully aware of the fact that he has corrupt individuals running government with him, hence his statement on November 4, 2016, questioning the alertness of the Anti-Corruption Commission while his ministers and indeed his advisors are amassing illegal wealth.
This is what gives birth to Diggers! News Diggers! This is what brings us here. President Lungu must be very proud of us because we are not only here to become the first Zambian online newspaper publication, registered with PACRA, ZRA and National Archives, but also to help him clean the mess. We are here to help the President stump out corruption and to assist the judiciary to met out deserving punishment on perpetrators.
Of course we cannot say how guilty or innocent President Lungu is of corruption, but if he is truly unhappy with the performance of the Anti-Corruption Commission as he put it, then he must be pleased with our birth because we believe so dearly in his declared fight against corruption. We will work with the President closely on this fight. We will try our best, with the help of Zambian whistleblowers, to check that his ministries, his office and indeed his house are free of corruption – we will tell him what the Anti-Corruption Commission is hesitant to say.
It will be our earnest aim to report news, all news – bad or good – in a concise and informative form; in a language that is understood by a bus driver and a foreign diplomat. Our interactive multi media platform will report news as early, if not earlier than anywhere else, with impartiality.
We have our ears to the ground, but the process of gathering news at Diggers! is unique and thorough. We are not excited to feed the public with unverified facts. Although you will mostly learn of breaking news from us, we are keen to present a fair, balanced, objective report at first instance. We promise that if you hear it from us, then it’s true.
The team of dedicated young journalists employed at Diggers! has been in-house trained to practice ethical journalism, free of malice, propaganda, perjury or plagiarism. We shall, therefore, not publish hate speech; and for the same reason, we will stay away from involving ourselves in any political agenda or sponsorship.
Take time to browse through the various categories of our platform as we populate the audio and video channels. We encourage whistle-blowers to carefully read the security guidelines outlined on the top link before sending us sensitive documents. You are also welcome to visit us physically at the address indicated on the bottom right corner.
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