Government to decentralise ZANIS operations


GOVERNMENT says it will soon decentralise operations of the Zambia News and Information Services (ZANIS) from the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting Services headquarters to provincial level to ensure effective service delivery.
Speaking when he paid a courtesy call on acting Copperbelt permanent secretary Georgina Kasapato in Ndola yesterday, Ministry of Information and Broadcasting Services permanent secretary Emmanuel Mwamba said ZANIS offices in all provinces will be placed under the office of provincial permanent secretaries to streamline their operations and promote accountability among members of staff.
Mr Mwamba said provincial permanent secretaries will be monitoring the operations of ZANIS offices in their areas and will also be responsible for employing support staff like office assistants and drivers instead of the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting Services headquarters.
“It is not right for members of staff such as drivers and office assistants to be employed from the ministry. We will soon allow you to be employing such people at provincial level as this will reduce certain challenges such as accommodation that they are faced with once they relocate. So, just get in touch with the ministry,” Mr Mwamba said.
Earlier, Ms Kasapato said ZANIS officers have been facing challenges such as lack of transport and accommodation when they are deployed to their stations in the districts.
Ms Kasapato also said Government funding to ZANIS has been inadequate and hoped that it will be increased in next year’s national budget.
ZANIS members of staff face quite a number of challenges. I can give an example of an officer who has been sent to ZANIS in Lufwanyama but he cannot go there because he has not secured accommodation that side.
“He is still at the provincial office in Ndola, so I don’t know whether he commutes to Lufwanyama and back on a daily basis or not,” she said.
Mr Mwamba responded that Government will quickly deal with the accommodation and transport challenges ZANIS officers are facing.
And Mr Mwamba said Chief Mumporokoso of Northern Province yesterday submitted an application to the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting Services for a licence to set up a community radio station in Mporokoso.
The community radio station will be the first in Mporokoso if the licence is granted.
Meanwhile, Mr Mwamba has urged law enforcement agents on the Copperbelt to acquaint themselves with the law on holograms to curb piracy.
Mr Mwamba said it is important for law enforcement agents on the Copperbelt to understand the law on holograms for them to get rid of pirated music products from the market.
“Artistic works without holograms will not be allowed on the market by November 1, 2013. It is in this vein that we want all law enforcement agents here on the Copperbelt to understand the rules on holograms,” he said.
Mr Mwamba was speaking in Kitwe yesterday during the official opening of a sensitisation workshop on holograms for law enforcement agents on the Copperbelt.
He urged producers and artists to ensure that their works have holograms to fight piracy, which robs them of their hard-earned money.