Amos Chanda Blocks Critics on Twitter
The Special Assistant for Press and PR to the President – Amos Chanda – has blocked one of his critics after Dr Sishuwa Sishuwa told him to stop conflating his role with that of spokesperson of the Patriotic Front.
He is the second member of the PF to block prominent critics rather than address them. Minister of Transport and Communications Dr Brian Mushimba took a similar move in February this year when Dr Sishuwa demanded justification for the minister’s decision to get his broken arm treated in South Africa, where he stayed for over a month.
The spat came about following Amos Chanda’s tweets congratulating winners in last week’s by-elections in President Lungu’s name. Dr Sishuwa Sishuwa suggested that congratulations were also in order for losers as they too contribute to democracy and that it was not Amos Chanda’s place to call for ‘introspection and understanding’ being just an aide.
“Amos, you are a press aide to the President of Zambia”, replied Dr Sishuwa. “You are not a press aide to the President of Patriotic Front. Do you understand the difference? Don’t you think matters to do with the PF such as introspection should be left to the PF President, Davies Mwila, Sunday Chanda?”, Dr Sishuwa asked.
At this point, other Twitter users advised Dr Sishuwa not to waste his time on Chanda, saying he is unreceptive to professional advise. Chisanga, who uses the twitter handle @uwachikata, wrote, “Thanks Dr Sishuwa for this even though it appears Mr Chanda is not one who listens to reason as shown here”, a message that was echoed by another user, Mr Right (@FredKamanya), who tweeted “You can’t advise any PF member, they’re are above anything. While I appreciate your efforts, I can tell you that you’re wasting your time.”
Unable to tolerate any further criticism and sustain the discussion, the President’s Special Assistant for Press and Public Relations moved to block his chief critic. Moments later, Dr Sishuwa tweeted “Today, l suggested to Amos Chanda, spokesperson of the President of #Zambia, Edgar Lungu, that he should stop conflating his role with that of the spokesperson of the ruling Patriotic Front party. Chanda, instead of engaging in constructive debate, has responded by BLOCKING me!”
Another twitter user, SkippyinZambia, also complained that Chanda has blocked him, posting an image in support. “That little coward Amos is doing it to every critic. He will regret one day when Edgar falls and there is no protection for him.”, Skippy tweeted. Other netizens who subsequently revealed that Chanda had blocked them include Wilfred Zulu, Webster Mulenga, Florence Chanda, and Norman Chipakupaku.