The media as a tool for peace building in the community. a study of selected media houses in Lusaka, Zambia.
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The aim of this study was to investigate the media as a tool for peace building in the community with specific focus on selected media houses in Lusaka. The specific objectives of the study were; to establish the role the media is playing in peace-building in the communities,to examine the extent to which the media plays a role in peace building, to identify the challenges the media face in Peace building initiatives and to suggest the ways in which media houses in Zambia would work towards building peace. A qualitative descriptive research design and convenient sampling was used with a sample size of fifteen respondents from five different media houses in Lusaka. Primary data was obtained via interview guides and analysed by drawing linkages between the study problem and theory. The study found that the major role which the media played towards peace building was as follows; educating citizens, facilitating dialogue, medium for information, coverage and dissemination, promoting democracy, preservation of culture, improving family bonds, promoting accountability and promoting transparency, equality and equity. The study also established the following challenges: airtime for broadcasting, Finances and resources, political differences or attitudes towards peace, Stakeholders participation, language barriers, limited coverage, limited access to information, limited freedom to media, negative perception of people and logistical and transport problems. Based on the above findings, the study concludes that the media could be a powerful tool of peace building in the community. The finding is also in agreement with the Social Responsibility Theory which was applied in the research. The study recommends the that in order to enhance the media as a tool for peace building in the community, propaganda should be avoided, more promotion of responsible coverage and reporting, de-politicising the media, allowing media independence and enhancing media freedom.
The University of Zambia