President Michael Sata’s press aide George Chellah yesterday went ballistic and verbally abused a Daily Nation reporter and threatened him with unknown consequences over a story in which he had failed to give the position of the president on the cancellation of former Defence Minister Geoffrey Bwalya Mwamba maize transportation contract with the Food and Reserve Agency (FRA).
The reporter attempted to get a comment by voice phone call and letter through the short messaging system (SMS) all of which went unanswered as they were ignored.
When the Daily Nation published the story, Chellah in his lack of respect and courtesy in communication ignored formal greetings called the reporter and attacked him for wasting his time and writing false stories.
Chellah, a former Post Newspaper reporter could not listen or give a chance to the reporter to explain went on with the attacks and abuses charging that the reporter had even failed to finish his journalism training.
Chellah told the reporter that his journalism was adolescent and that he (Simwaka) was just excited with his small job.
President Sata’s press aide failed to explain why he did not answer calls from Simwaka when called to comment on allegations Mwamba made that that President Sata had terminated maize transportation contracts he had signed with FRA.
On Sunday, Mwamba revealed that President Sata had ordered the cancellation of his FRA contract and as a matter of objectivity and balancing the story, the reporter called Chellah three times but his calls went unanswered.
The reporter latter sent Chellah SMS but by press time he had not responded to the text message. But yesterday, Chellah called the reporter and accused him of not having considered his comment which the reporter had not received.
When the reporter told Chellah that in fact, he had not received his message, the State House spokesperson said the reporter was a liar. Chellah’s SMS to the reporter was only received at 11:10 hours yesterday, soon after the verbal attacks and even then, it could not be accessed as it came blocked.
“Why should I waste my time talking to you when you write false stories? Your journalism is adolescent and you are just excited about your small job. Your writing is very poor and pathetic and may be you did not finish your journalism course. I know you and we have been together but let me tell you that you are not a journalist,” Chellah told the reporter