The freedom of expression in Zambia: Are there enough laws put in place to strenthen the exercise of this freedom on do most laws rob it of its efficacy?
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The Constitution of Zambia, which is the supreme law of the Land, does recognize and guarantee the freedom of expression under Article 20. The constitution, under Article 20(i) provides that:-"Except with his own consent, no person shall be hindered on the enjoyment of his freedom of expression, that is to say, freedom to hold opinions without interference, freedom to impart and communicate ideas and information without interference, whether the communication be to the public generally or to any person or class of persons, and freedom from interference with his correspondence. "The preamble to the Zambian Constitution declares that Zambia will 'uphold the values of democracy, transparency, accountability and good governance.' Transparency, accountability and good governance are only possible where there is freedom of expression and the right of the public to know is assured. Freedom of expression includes not only freedom to hold opinions without interference, but also freedom to receive ideas and information, and to impart and communicate ideas and information without interference. "Freedom of expression is the life-blood of a democracy." It has been observed that "democratization is closely tied to freedom of expression, together with that of assembly and association."The value of free expression is that it assures the individual of self-fulfillment and it also serves as a means of attaining the truth. Free speech in addition, creates a method of security for the participation of the members of a society in political and social decision making and it further serves as a means of maintaining the balance between stability and change in a society.In a democratic society, such as Zambia, what is at stake is the fundamental principle of the people's right to know. Since development is tied to good governance, which includes the freedom of expression, government has a duty to ensure that this freedom is guaranteed.This study shall consist of four chapters. The first chapter will outlines what the freedom of expression is, its sources and its nature. The second chapter will look at the development of the freedom of expression in Zambia, hi the third chapter, a comparison will be drawn between laws that derogate or restrict the freedom of expression and those that enhance the exercise of this freedom. A general conclusion on whether there are enough laws in Zambia to secure and facilitate the exercise of the freedom of expression will make the fourth and final chapter of this work and recommendations will be made in the same chapter.
- Law