Wednesday, 6 May 2009


Post Newspaper reporter Patson Chilemba is sandwiched between Patrotic Front leader Michael Sata and general secretary Edward Mumbi during the PF's last rally in Lusaka on Wednesday.

I have not blogged on this site for a long time now. This is because of certain reasons.
I have put my blogging activities on ice because I was sorting out one or two things.
Anyway, I was preparing for a better blog or website where I wanted to make certain changes or make this blog bigger and better.
However, I was disturbed by a call from Mr Patson Chilemba who was ordering me to remove the blog, which I have re-posted above.
I took this picture in the run-up to the 2008 presidential elections in Lusaka.
I was busy when he called me initially last week. Patson said he wanted to discuss pictures on my blog. Patson told me in no uncertain terms that the pictures on the blog where embarassing him and in a clearly commanding tone, he ordered me to delete the posts.
I was in a wrong place to discuss such a matter. I advised him to call me some other time when I shall be better placed to talk. Before he could hang up, I indicated to Patson that I was not ready to 'match to his orders'.
In the second call from my Mr Chilemba, which was on Tuesday, may 5 2009, he indicated that the pictures where defamatory and he gave me an unspecified period in which to delete them.
"I have consulted senior people at my place of work and we think the pictures are defamatory.
"What I want to tell you is that you should remove the pictures because they are denting my image. I am running out of talk time bye," he uttered.
I am not a legal person. Therefore, I would like to find out from the legal minds out there whether the pictures are truly defamatory.
My interest was not in defaming Patson. I am a Photo-journalist for goodness sake! I carry pictures in my head and in that post, the picture was where a reporter was on the 'wrong side'.
I have never seen anywhere in Zambia where reporters share the same platform with politicians, especially at an event like a public rally and under any circumstance.
In this picture, Patson could have been mistaken for a political party cadre, hence my slug.
I am a photographer and missing such a picture would be a fallacy, especially that it was scoop.
I have no hard feelings for Patson, but I think next time, he must watch where he sits during such political events.


Captain Lancaster said...

Richie-I'm no lawyer but i can tell you that this is not defamation. The definition of defamation is very clear "communication of a statement that makes a claim, expressly stated or implied to be factual, that may give an individual, business, product, group, government or nation a negative image. It is usually,a requirement that this claim be false and that the publication is communicated to someone other than the person defamed" therefore the picture is not defamatory. The picture was taken at a public event and is therefore in the public domain. He can only claim to have been infringed if it was a private event.

Jitu'cha said...

Remember you are a photojournalist and why would you be deleting photos which you captures while you do your duty as a photojournalist. I see no reason to remove pictures.