Social media abuse worries State

Social online media
Social online media

GOVERNMENT is concerned about the rampant abuse of social media networks, which some individuals have turned into platforms for insults and malicious statements against defenceless people, Minister of Information and Broadcasting Services Joseph Katema has said.
Dr Katema said Government is concerned that some online users are in the habit of posting insults instead of using social media for the benefit of the society.
Dr Katema said this in Lusaka yesterday when he officially opened the 2014 Social Good Summit under the theme: “Connecting for Good. Connecting for All.”
The summit was organised by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).
“Government is concerned about the rampant abuse of the social media networks where some people have turned this important communication tool into a platform of insults and all sorts of malicious statements against defenceless people.
“This is unfortunate and unproductive and it is my hope that a forum like this one provides a fertile opportunity for finding solutions for this challenge,” Dr Katema said.
The minister said as the world makes a transition from Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) next year to Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), there is urgent need for all development actors to be more creative and to effectively use social media for the benefit of the society.
“To this effect, I am happy to note that we have a media forum for HIV, health and development.
“It is such platforms that will help the United Nations family and Government to educate and inform the people on matters of HIV and AIDS, health and development in general,” Dr Katema said.
He said Government has placed high premium on the development of the information communication technology (ICT) sector, including the mobile phone industry.
Dr Katema said this is because of the critical role ICTs play not only in enhancing the free flow of, and public access to, information, but also transforming people’s lives socially and economically.
The minister said the ongoing digital migration process from analogue television broadcasting is also another landmark development in the mordenisation of the country’s ICT industry in terms of technology.
UNDP country director Viola Morgan pledged the UN agency’s continued technical and financial support to Government’s programmes on improving the ICT sector.