Showing posts with label Paul Shalala. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Paul Shalala. Show all posts

Sunday, 4 February 2018

US Funded Nileleni Project To Inspire 10,000 School Girls

By Paul Shalala
Some girls in Katete learning how to sew washable pads

Three Mandela Washington Fellows have embarked on a one year long project aimed at inspiring about 10,000 school going girls not to drop out of school.

At the time when teenage pregnancies, rape and defilement of the girl child are increasing, the United States funded Nileleni Project is expected to work with over 6,000 girls in Katete District of Eastern Province and about 4,000 girls in Pemba District of Southern Province.

Evans Nsooka, a humanitarian and a 2016 Mandela Washington Fellow based in Katete will spearhead the project and his focus area will be Katete while another 2016 Mandela Washington Fellow Nangamba Chintu, a journalist, will lead the project in Pemba District.

Paul Shalala is the third Mandela Washington Fellow on the project and his area of expertise will be awareness, advocacy and publicity for the public in the media.

The $22,000 project has already been launched and a number of clergy, traditional leaders and school authorities have already joined the project.


Last week during a meeting to announce the project, traditional counselors who are popularly known as alangizi, resolved to stop conducting  traditional ceremonies for young girls and instead concentrate on encouraging then to stay in schools.

The alangizi also pledged to encourage the out of school girls to go back to school.

Dorothy Mwale, a veteran alangizi trainer from Katete, who travelled to Pemba to train other alangizi, urged the people of Pemba to desist from teaching young girls explicit marital information.
Religious leaders from across Pemba District posing
for a photo after attending a meeting where the Nileleni
Project was officially introduced to them.

She advised the alangizi to only teach girls issues such as menstrual hygiene and how to take care of themelves.

"Some alangizi are being paid money by young girls' mothers to counsel them about good morals but they end up teaching the girls how to handle men of different shapes and sizes, forgetting that they are destroying the young girls," said Ms Mwale.

She further noted that after undergoing initiation ceremonies, some girls start earning a living from selling their bed skills to other interested girls,thus destroying the entire community.

And speaking on behalf of the trainee alangizi from Pemba, Agness Phiri admitted that initiation ceremonies were still happening in Pemba and that explicit marriage information was being given to girls.

She vowed that with the training she has received with her friends, this will never happen again.

Nangamba Chintu stressing a point during the training
Mrs Phiri said she appreciated the training as it was an opener to some of the vices that were being committed by alangizi. 

In total,16 alangizi were trained.

These are expected to start community clubs for out of school girls aged between 13 and 19 years.

The alangizi will also lead out in focus group discussions.

Further, life skills such as  sewing and production of washable  pads will be imparted in the girls as part of the reproductive health education and income generating activities. 

Meanwhile, a separate meeting for religious leaders from across Pemba District has also been held to sensitise them on the Nileleni Project.

The Pastors resolved to work with the alangizi in helping to identify out of school girls through youth structures and christian alangizi from their churches.

The clergymen also resolved that they will help create awareness about the program by making announcements in their local congregations on a weekly basis.


In Katete, progress has also been made in many areas.

The project has been launched across the district and with the help of World Vision, thousands of school going girls have been engaged.
Some of the girls trained in making pads

Alangizi have also heightened their participation as they lead out in focus group meetings.

School going girls have been trained in making reusable pads which is part of the menstrual hygiene being emphasised under Nileleni Project.

The hope is that when these girls have pads, they will reduce on absenteeism in class and this may impact positively on their performance in school.

"We hope that when these girls learn how to make reusable pads, they can be able to use some and sale a good number of them so that they can raise some money for themselves," said Mr Nsooka.

The materials used to make these pads are readily available in Zambia.

Once these pads are made, the girls can use them for four to six months before they can throw them away.

Tuesday, 19 December 2017

From Mumbwa Villager To Award Winning International Journalist

Paul poses with UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres
By Paul Shalala in New York

Ask any Zambian about the word Mumbwa, the answer they will give you will have something to do with backwardness, under development, primitivity or illiteracy.

For decades, my hometown Mumbwa in Central Province has been a laughing stoke countrywide.

There is a common phrase in the country that any person who shows signs of being primitive is a Mumbwa-Mumbwa.

But where does this derogatory term Mumbwa-Mumbwa come from?

In the 1990s, the 152 kilometres Mumbwa - Lusaka road was in a dilapidated state.

People on public transport could take 4 hours to reach the capital city.

The road had huge potholes, diversions and all sorts of things.

By the time someone reaches Lusaka, the whole body would be painted brown with dust.

This is what made most people identify Mumbwa residents when they walked the streets of Cairo, Lumumba, Cha Cha Cha or Freedom way.

"Uyu achoka ku Mumbwa, namuonela che ku lukungu patupi," (This one is coming from Mumbwa, I can tell from the dust on his body).

This is how residents of my agricultural town were given this funny name and to date, people still think Mumbwa is backward but alas we have moved on.

Today we comfortably drive only one hour from Lusaka and you are in Mumbwa.

Mumbwa is my home town, dad was transferred there in 1967 to open schools and he has lived there since then.

Initially, he was a Head Master at Lusaka Girls School which is located along Chikwa road.

I was born at the University Teaching Hospital in Lusaka on 29 August 1984 but I grew up in Nangoma area of Mumbwa.

Mumbwa: Where the journalism dream was born

My journey to journalism started like an accident.

As a boy growing up in Lubanze village, I was always attracted to the many fighter jets which used to fly over our farm.

My village is just a few kilometres away from Mumbwa Air Force base where fighter pilots occasionally train in our airspace.

In the 1990s, it was common to see Zambia Air Force planes do aerial acrobatics and military manoeuvres in the sky.

The way those planes did summersaults and all sorts of moves, made me develop interest in aviation.

I grew up hoping to become a pilot.

In those days, my father Namasiku Kamuti Shalala had an ITT Radio (Dot Com babies don't know it) and we used to listen to it every time we went to look after cattle in the bush.

Dad was so updated with news that he never used to miss any single news bulletin on the BBC World Service, the international radio channel of the London based media conglomerate.

His favourite radio program was BBC Focus on Africa which was in those days presented by among others, Kenyan journalist Joseph Warungu.

Every time the montage for Focus on Africa would ring at 3pm, 5pm or 7pm GMT, I would rush to dad and tell him: "Tate, kinako yamakande." (Dad its time for news).

I started living the life my father led, I knew all the Sola Odunfas, Umaru Fofanas, Tidiane Sys, Elizabeth Ohenes and many other BBC Africa personalities of those days.

Fortunately, i met Umaru Fofana in Turkey in 2011, Joseph Warungu in Kenya in 2013 and Tidiane Sy in South Africa in 2016.

And Every time i met these people, I took photos with them and showed them to dad and he would feel great.

With time, I grew interest in journalism.

Dad would repeatedly tell me: "Mwanake, njiubata kuba nizibo, akubale." (My son if you want to be intelligent, read."

Dad had a big library of newspapers and books, I used to read like I don't know.

I researched on many things to an extent where when i reached Grade seven, I knew all capital cities in Africa and all Presidents on the continent.

Because of this interest I was developing, dad started calling me "Bo editor" not knowing that one day i would become a journalist.

To date, dad still calls me Bo Editor whenever I visit him at the village.

When i finished Grade 12, I decided to abandon my childhood career of becoming a pilot and ended up choosing journalism.

When i picked my Grade 12 results, I got 10 points and my siblings insisted I do law.

However,  I refused and enrolled at Evelyn Hone College in Lusaka in 2005 and did the three year Journalism Diploma.

I remember in one of the Basic Reporting classes facilitated by my mentor Douglas Hampande, he asked the whole class to explain the history behind the decades old Israeli-Palestinian crisis.

I raised my hand and he asked me to explain.

I went like: "Sir, in 70 AD, the Romans captured Jerusalem and expelled the Jews from the Holyland. The Jews then got scattered worldwide........"

Before I could finish my answer, Mr Hampande asked me to start explaining from 1948 when the Jews declared the State of Israel.

In short, my answer to this question was a demonstration of how I had done too much research in Mumbwa to a point where I had too much data on almost every issue of interest.

After leaving college in 2007, I lived with my elder sister Nawa (now Dr. Nawa Shalala Mwale) and her husband Mr Humphrey Mwale in Handsworth.

In 2008, a former college mate of mine Bright Mukwasa phoned me somewhere in July and offered me a job at a newly opened weekly newspaper called the New Vision.

The paper had just been opened and one of the people behind it was Webster Malido, a former Post Newspapers editor.

I worked there for almost two years and learnt alot from the colleagues especially that we had meagre resources and sometimes we would walk to assignments and back to the newsroom which was in Soweto area of Lusaka.

Despite all these challenges, the paper grow to become a bi-weekly and finally a daily newspaper.

From there, I joined MUVI Television in March 2010.

Before that, MUVI Television General Manager Costa Mwansa had been reorganizing the newsroom and wanted some people who would beef up the political desk.
Paul Shalala and Costa Mwansa earlier this year

"Young man I remember how you used to analyse local and international news at college, can't you join us at MUVI TV? I need you," read an e-mail Mr Mwansa sent me in February 2010.

I accepted the offer and joined the privately owned TV and thats how my journalism career boomed.

I worked at MUVI Television for two years and during that time, I literally went to every corner of this country covering politics especially the 2011 general elections in some by-elections.

It is in those days when I covered the opposition leader Michael Sata extensively and learnt most of his Bemba proverbs which he used to churn out at rallies.

At MUVI Television, I had a chance to study politics and governance in Germany for three months and became a permanent analyst (political commentator) on the flagship MUVI Television breakfast show Sunrise.

This show made me an instant celebrity as I used to speak my mind without fear or favour, analysed politics and coincidentally i was a student of Political Science at the University of Zambia at the time.

I won many hearts of people on that show were Costa Mwansa would moderate  and I would seat and debate various issues with another mentor of mine Mabvuto Phiri.

In 2012, I resigned from MUVI Television and went into freelance practice for six months before joining my current employer the Zambia National Broadcasting Corporation (ZNBC).

It is at ZNBC where this boy of Mumbwa has made his greatest impact on the journalism career locally and abroad.

While working at TV2 in September 2013, my boss Yvette Tembo (now Mrs Chanda), allowed me to spend three weeks in Mazabuka and Solwezi to investigate the impact of mining on small holder farmers.

The story was aired on the TV2 Morning Live program and it made me a finalist for the 2013 Africa Story Challenge Media Awards which were held in Ethiopia that year.

During the story camp for all 20 finalists in the lakeside town of Naivasha in Kenya, I had the opportunity of meeting Joseph Warungu and Maimouna Jallow, the two people I used to hear on BBC when i was a boy in Mumbwa.

The following year, the same story won me the Second Prize during the  2014 Africa Fact Checking Media Awards in Nairobi, Kenya.

Since then, this former cattle herder from Mumbwa has travelled the world, spoke at conferences and in August 2016 had an opportunity to seat 3 meters away from then US President Barack Obama when he addressed the Mandela Washington Fellows in Washington DC.

The UNCA Media Award

In January this year, my assignments editor Chansa Mayani sent me to Kabwe to cover Central Province Permanent Secretary Chanda Kabwe as he toured the many fields which were affected by the Army worms.

After the assignment, we decided to sleep since the tour ended late that day.

Before we could start off for Kitwe the following day, the Permanent Secretary phoned me saying: "Press Aide (that's what he calls me), the World Bank Country Manager is coming to pay a courtesy call on me, please cover it before you go back to the Copperbelt."

I covered the event and after World Bank Country Manager Ina-Marlene Ruthenberg explained how the World Bank was to implement the US $65 million Zambia Mining Environmental and Remediation Project, I decided to film a number of shots of the old Kabwe mine and some townships to show the impact of lead poisoning.

I returned to my base in Kitwe and my editor Chansa Mayani told me the story was not as simple as I thought it was.

"Young man this is an international story. Go to Chingola, Mufulira and film people who are affected. Get the real voices of the victims of mining pollution and lets make a feature story for Morning Live," she said.

I followed her advise and filmed people in Shimulala area of Chingola who were affected by pollution.

The story aired a few days later and when the United Nations Correspondents Association (UNCA) called for entries for their annual media awards earlier this year, I did not hesitate to enter.

Despite having entered for the same awards in 2016 and being unsuccessful, i remembered what my boss Chansa had told me and I entered the pollution story.

On Friday, I received the 2017 Ricardo Ortega Memorial Prize in Broadcast Media from United Nations Secretary General Antonio Gueterres during the UNCA Media Awards in New York.

This is the biggest media award in my career, bigger than the two previous international and four national media awards I won in the past four years.

Who would have thought that a former cattle herder from Mumbwa would one day travel to the USA, shake hands with the UN Chief, collect an international media award?

Who ever thought a Mumbwa-Mumbwa would be awarded at the same ceremony with celebrated Hollywood actress Angelina Jolie who was given the UNCA Global Citizen Award for her efforts to protect women and children in conflict zones?

No one ever thought a this former village boy who would every day walk on foot to school and back would one day compete in an international journalism competition and beat journalists from renowned international media institutions.

In short, life has many opportunities and God uplifts even the simplest people in society.


I believe God is not yet done with me, more is yet to come.

Today as I write this article from the 14th floor of the 1,700 bed capacity Pennysylvania Hotel in New York, I shed tears because I think I do not deserve the accolades am receiving on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, WhatsApp and everywhere.

The person who deserves this is my 80-something old father at the village in Mumbwa.

This is the man behind this media award.

He is the one who made me a journalist accidentally, he groomed me to where iam today.

In those days, I used to look up to many journalists and i would imitate them reading news or reporting while seated alone in our grass thatched house.

But like Zambia's award winning rapper B Flow likes saying: "We used to admire but now we inspire."

And like 2015 Junior President Winner Perrykent Nkole once said, "God can raise someone from Grass to Grace."

Today I want to inspire someone who is reading this, do not give up on your dreams, God will uplift you, do your part and God will do the rest.

When the United Nations Correspondents Association informed me that I had won the 2017 Ricardo Ortega Memorial Prize in Broadcast Media in the Bronze category, I almost gave up when I read the part where they said they could not give me accomodation and an air ticket to attend the ceremony in New York.

Luckily, without my knowledge, ZNBC Management had already sat and voted to sponsor my trip.

Three weeks ago when i went to see ZNBC Director General Richard Mwanza with a letter requesting for sponsorship, he smiled and told me they were miles ahead of me.

Coincidentally, the World Bank Country Office when they heard that my story on their work in Zambia won that prestigious media award, they too came on board and bought the air ticket before ZNBC could do so (what a double blessing).

On Wednesday i flew into the JFK International Airport in New York on a plane paid for by the World Bank.

And on Friday evening in New York, I was dining with diplomats, celebrities like Hollywood actress Angelina Jolie, American comedian Jordan Klepper and multi-award winning journalists because ZNBC gave me a free platform for that pollution story to air.

ZNBC released resources and made sure I got a visa so that I don't miss the awards ceremony.

Bembas say "Uwakwensha ubushiku bamutasha elyo bwacha" meaning when someone drives you overnight, you must say thanks to them at dawn.

Likewise, the Tongas say "Leza napaa talizyi mijinchi" which means, when God blesses you, you will not hear his foot steps.

In this vein, I wish to thank ZNBC management, my bosses and colleagues like Mr Kelly Chubili (he passed the script), Chansa Mayani (who assigned me), Anderson Lungu (the video editor), Prince Chinene (who filmed the documentary) and John Zyambo who drove us to the spots where we filmed the documentary.

If I didn't personally thank the World Bank, ZNBC management and my colleagues in the newsroom, I would have fallen for another Bemba proverb which says "Ushitasha, mwana wandoshi (a person who doesn't appreciate is a child of a wizard."

As I ponder on the 16 hours non stop flight from New York to Johannesburg, I ask myself a simple question: what good can come out of Mumbwa?

The answer is miracles, Mumbwa is as good as any part of Zambia and this award is for every Zambian and we should all smile about it.

These smiles should overshadow the decades old "discrimination" of people like me from that area of the country who we jokingly call Ba Mumbwa-Mumbwa.

Mumbwa has risen from the alleged slumber and has today conquered the world, but does the name Mumbwa-Mumbwa still stand, the answer is a capital NOOOO.

Saturday, 21 October 2017

Zambian Journalists in $20,000 Boost From US Government

US Ambassador Eric Schultz (in suit) during the grant
signing ceremony last week
By Staff Writter

The Unites States Government has provided $20,000 to PAMOS Media Consultancy, a private company to conduct capacity building trainings to 100 Zambian journalists.

The funding is for one year and is aimed at training the journalists in budget tracking and investigative journalism skills.

Speaking when he hosted 11 organisations and companies which were granted about $300,000 in combined funding last week, US Ambassador to Zambia Eric Schultz said the grants are aimed at helping Zambian grassroots organisations work.

“These grants go to the grassroots organisations that are at the core of development in Zambia. The United States government has a long term commitment to help organisations which are making a difference,” said Mr Schultz.

PAMOS Media Consultancy was funded under the Accountability and Transparency theme to build the capacity of journalists to report on the utilisation of public funds.

“Under this project, we will train journalists to understand the budget formulation process, the utilisation of public funds and the role other relevant government institutions make in checking how public funds are utilised,” said PAMOS Media Consultancy founder and Managing Director Paul Shalala.

Mr Shalala, who is a 2016 Mandela Washington Fellow, said the project will start in November 2017 and is expected to be concluded in August 2018.

He added that the organisation will not restrict itself to the 100 budgeted journalist but may go beyond the number to ensure as many journalists are trained in the next one year.

In this project, Mr Shalala partnered with 2016 Mandela Washington Fellow Christabel Mwango to apply for the grant.

The two are expected to commence their trainings next month in Lusaka before going to other provinces.

“Tentatively, we have set November 3 as the date of the launch of the project in Lusaka and the subsequent holding of the Lusaka Province training. Three weeks later we will be in Southern Province and Eastern Province in early December,” said Miss Mwango.

She revealed that the remaining seven provinces will host their trainings in 2018.

Under the project, PAMOS Media Consultancy is also expected to produce a 25 minutes documentary to show how Zambian journalists will benefit from the project.

The documentary will be aired on a number of Television stations. 

Thursday, 23 June 2016

Mandela Washington Fellow: Paul Shalala

He is popularly known as ‘Mumbwa-Mumbwa’ or the boy from Nangoma.

You probably know him as a journalist but us who are closer to him know him as a proud Mumbwa villager.

Paul Shalala is so proud of his village that whenever he visits it in his native Mumbwa District, he never comes back without uploading a photo of himself eating lusala or eating mango with his ageing father.

Some have been making fun of his once ‘backward’ Mumbwa but the young man does not shy away from revealing his love for his childhood.

“I was born in Lusaka, raised in Nangoma area of Mumbwa District, educated in Mumbwa, working in Kitwe and I know one day I will be buried in Mumbwa. That’s my home and I know no other home than Mumbwa,” said Paul in a telephone interview from Syracuse University in New York where he is studying Public Management as part of US President Barack Obama’s Mandela Washington Fellowship.

At a time when most youths brag about ‘living’ in Kabulonga, Ibex Hill or Woodlands, Paul is always talking about his Lubanze village.

What is so unique about Nangoma?

“Nangoma is an area in Mumbwa which consists of over 500 villages which form almost half of the Chiefdom for Senior Chief Shakumbila of the Sala people. I grew up in Lubanze Village. That’s my homeland. I love that area and I visit it very often.”

“As a family, we have a lot of land. We do agriculture and own houses. My parents moved from Lusaka to that area in 1967 and since then they had been moving from one school to the other until they finally settled in Lubanze and retired there. “

“My father taught at over five schools across Nangoma. My mother did the same too and currently she is in the board for Nangoma Mission Hospital. Shalala is a household name there. Actually my elder brother Louis is contesting as Mumbwa District Council Chairman under the Patriotic Front.”

Asked about his own contribution to his village, Paul smiled before opening up saying he even owns a registered transport company for minibuses called Nangoma Transport.

He says he had been a Youth leader for the SDA Church in Mumbwa and worked a lot with youths thatside.

“I spent over five years from 2008 to 2013 leading and training Adventist Youths in Mumbwa as a whole: covering Kabile, Mumbwa, Nangoma, Keezwa, Lutale and other areas. Currently, I sponsor an annual Independence Football tournament called Shakumbila Cup which is named after Senior Chief Shakambila and is held at his Chisalu Palace in Kakombo area. This tournament is for all the village teams in Nangoma. I also sponsor and buy balls, boots and jerseys for two amateur football teams in  Nangoma called Manchester United and Kakombo Boys. Nangoma is my home and I cannot forget where I come from.”

Despite being born in the capital city, Paul never boasts of being a town boy.

His obsession for Mumbwa is surprising.

On Thursday last week, he and 41 other Zambian youths left for the United States to be part of the 2016 Mandela Washington Fellowship.

The 42 youths were selected by the US State Department to be part of the 1,000 young Africans who are currently spread across the US attending training at various American universities in public management, energy, civic leadership and business and entrepreneurship.

Paul is studying Public Management at Syracuse University’s Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs with 24 other youths from other African countries.

“I never ever dreamt of one day stepping into an American university and be taught by a Professor. It’s a humbling experience and I thank President Barack Obama for this once in a lifetime opportunity. I applied for this opportunity in 2013 and 2014 but I didn’t make it. I never gave up and for sure the following year I applied and here iam………,” he said.

Paul says he is already inspired by the composition of the fellows he has seen so far.

“We have a young politician from South Africa who is part of our class. He is the youngest elected Councillor in his country, having won a ward in Johannesburg at the age of 22 in 2012. I have also seen a South Sudanese and a Nigerian fellow who are both blind but are doing wonders back home.”
And with the coming of the Presidential Summit in Washington, DC which will climax with President Obama addressing all the 1,000 fellows during a town hall meeting in August, Paul says it will be an emotional thing for him to see Obama.

“I grew up in the George W. H. Bush days and I know every US President  since then,by name. Obama will be a special one because I will see him face to face and probably greet him. I cannot wait to get a selfie with him…….,” said Paul before bursting into laughter.

And when asked about his future prospects after coming back home, Paul says he has major plans for ZNBC and the media.

“With the help of my employer ZNBC, I plan to help set up desks for specialisation in the newsroom. Am learning how American newsrooms operate with specialised reporters in each desk. We can replicate that back home. We will be touring several media institutions and meet opinion leaders who can help me in that area.

“Secondly, with the help of other 2016 Mandela Washington Fellows, we plan to start training young reporters and school going children in basics of journalism. Our plan is to cover at least five provinces and spread the best practices of this noble profession to future media personalities.”

Paul is expected back home in August, a few days before Zambia gooes to the polls and he says: “Am coming to vote and I hope my 1 vote will add to someone’s 50 percent…...”

Note: This story was originally published by Zambia's largest online newspaper Mwebantu on June 20, 2016. It has been reproduced with permission

Saturday, 2 April 2016

Paul Shalala Selected For 2016 Mandela Washington Fellowship

Paul Shalala

The US State Department has selected Zambia National Broadcasting Corporation (ZNBC) reporter Paul Shalala as a 2016 Mandela Washington Fellow.

Mr Shalala will be among a thousand young African leaders who will spend six months at US universities and institutions being mentored in public management, civic leadership and business and entrepreneurship.

Over 1,500 youths in Zambia applied for the fellowship and about 200 were interviews from which 41 were selected to travel to the USA in June for the fellowship.

The fellowship starts on 17th June and ends on 4th August.

According to a letter by US Ambassador to Zambia Eric Schulz to Mr Shalala, the ZNBC journalist will be among the youths who will also attend the Presidential Summit which President Barack Obama will host in Washington at the end of the fellowship in August.

Mr Schulz says Mr Shalala was successful in his interviews hence the reason the State Department offered him a place as a fellow.

And the Mandela Washington Team has disclosed that Mr Shalala will do his fellowship at Syracuse University in New York.

In an emailed statement, the team said Mr Shalala will study public management at the university and his placement is final and it cannot be changed.

Prominent among people who studied at Syracuse University are US Vice President Joe Biden and former US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright.

Mr Shalala applied for the Mandela Washington Fellowship in November 2015.

In February 2016, he was interviewed by the US Embassy.

His application for the public management track was based on his job experience at Zambia’s state broadcaster ZNBC.

He also profiled his award-winning blog The Zambian Analyst ( which he hopes can help him inform the public through his news and analytical pieces before, during and after the August 11 general elections this year.

Since 2014, thousands of young African leaders have undergone mentorship under the Mandela Washington Fellowship which President Obama is implementing under his Young African Leaders Initiative.

Prominent among Zambians who have undergone this fellowship are media personalities Luyando Hangala, Kenny Tonga, Patience Chisanga and Raphael Kumwenda, hip hop artist Brian ‘B Flow’ Bwembya, Governance expert Isaac Mwanza, and many other youths.

Meanwhile, the Zambia National Broadcasting Corporation is excited about Mr Shalala’s selection for this year’s Mandela Washington Fellowship.

ZNBC Corporate Affairs Manager Masuzyo Ndhlovu says the selection has been well received by management.

Monday, 5 January 2015

WM Media Pty Ltd Profiles Paul Shalala And His Journalism Career

By Winston Muleba II, Zambia
Aspire to reach your potential by competing with people who you think you can’t beat says Paul Shalala. 
Shalala is a young journalist and blogger who is based in Lusaka and works for the Zambia National Broadcasting Corporation as a Reporter. 
 “Am a news person and everything about me is about news. I read a lot of literature, newspapers and books. I watch a lot of TV programs especially news, documentaries and history programs. I also like making friends to hear what the common man is thinking and talking about. Am also a dot com baby. I spend most of the time on Twitter and Facebook trying to get latest news and find out what is trending across the world.” he says. 

He says always remember that no one will uplift you and your career if you do not take the first step to leap forward.
Shalala says his specialization in the past six years he has practiced journalism is politics and governance. 
He says he was born on 29th August 1984 at the University Teaching Hospital in Lusaka in a family of seven children.
“My father is Mr Namasiku Kamuti Shalala, a retired teacher now a farmer in Lubanze Village, in Nangoma and my mother is Mrs Monde Phyllis Shalala retired teacher also. I am a Christian, a Seventh - day Adventist. ” he says.
He says he went to Kasalu Basic School in Nangoma area of Mumbwa for his Primary and Junior Secondary School.
“I then went to Mumbwa High School for my senior secondary from 2000 to 2002. I studied for a Diploma in Journalism at the Evelyn Hone College in Lusaka from 2005 to 2007. Currently studying for my Bachelor’s degree at the University of Zambia under Distance Education. I have also done several specialized journalism trainings just to sharpen my journalism skills. I studied Politics, Elections and Good Governance at the International Institute for Journalism in Berlin, Germany, Business and Financial Reporting by the Thomson Reuters Foundation in Kampala, Uganda, Advanced Economic and Governance Reporting by the Thomson Reuters Foundation in Johannesburg, South Africa, Energy and Environmental Reporting as part of the Europe-Africa Young Journalists Programme in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia and Investigative Journalism and Anti-Corruption Reporting by the International Anti-Corruption Academy during a weeklong course at the West Africa Regional Training Center in Accra, Ghana.” he says.
Shalala says in the past years, he has worked in the print, electronic and online media.
“After college, I joined New Vision Newspaper in Lusaka where I worked for close to two years. In 2010 I joined MUVI Television where I worked until February 2012. I then decided to go into freelancing. I wrote for a number of online international newspapers like The Media Project in the USA and The London Evening Post in the UK. In September 2012, I was offered a job as a reporter at the Zambia National Broadcasting Corporation (ZNBC) in Lusaka. That’s where I currently work in the TV1 newsroom. I report mainly on politics and governance for our TV news but off course our stories also air on TV2 and Radios 1, 2 and 4.” he says.
Apart from his TV job, Shalala says he is also a blogger.
“I run my own blog called The Zambian Analyst ( where I analyze politics and governance issues in Zambia and the world. A blog is the only place where a journalist can add their own opinion and views to a news item.” he says.
Shalala says he is also a small businessman.
“I own a company called Nangoma Transport Limited which of course is registered by the Patents and Companies Registration Agency (PACRA). The company is a year old and has two public service minibuses that service the Lusaka – Mumbwa route. At the weekend when am off duty at ZNBC, I sometimes work as a minibus conductor. It is fun sometimes to go through the challenges conductors face on a daily basis. I’ve had experiences where a passenger thinks you are illiterate and they start insulting you in heavily broken English and when you respond in the Queen’s language, the confrontation ends because your English sounds superb. I have also had situations where you carry drunk people and they refuse to pay. It is fun being a conductor.” he says.
He says he has received a number of media awards in the past few years he has been practicing journalism.
“In April 2014 I won first prize TV category in the Policy Monitoring and Research Center (PMRC) for my stories and analysis of the constitution making process. On November 14, 2014 I received second prize in the 2014 Africa Fact Checking Media Awards in Nairobi, Kenya for my story on the impact of multi-national mining investments on Zambia’s food security. There were over 40 entries from journalists in 10 African countries. The first prize was won by Edem Srem of Ghana and Kenyan journalist Victor Amadala and myself came out second. My story had a huge impact such that dams were built for the farmers in Mazabuka after my story was aired, a Minister visited the displaced farmers and the plight of the displaced farmers became a priority for stakeholders. This is why I think I won the award. On December 18, 2014 I won the Best Innovation Award at the 2014 ZANEC Media Awards in Lusaka. The Zambia National Education Coalition (ZANEC) awarded me for a story I wrote on my blog on how 20,000 teachers in Zambia under the umbrella of the Zambian Teachers Forum are running a Facebook group of over 15,000 members and a WhatsApp group of over 5,000 members to help teachers find easy swapping from one district to another, mentor new teachers and share best practices of the art of teaching."
Shalala says the Africa Fact Checking Media Awards are a brain child of the collaboration between the Agence France Presse (AFP) Foundation, a sister organization of the AFP news agency in France and Africa Check, a journalism organization based in Johannesburg, South Africa.
“The two organizations introduced these awards to inspire journalists and help them fact check information on the continent. The two organizations encourage journalists in Africa to follow up propaganda and false claims made by politicians, public officials and other opinion leaders to mislead the public. Any journalist in Africa who does a story and fact checks a public claim can enter the awards and walk away with thousands of dollars. Am lucky to have been the only Zambian journalist among the eight finalists from across the continent and I was again the only one from Southern Africa among the three who got the awards.” he says. 
He says when he received his first media award he was happy and motivated to work even more hard to get more awards.
“An award sets you apart from other colleagues when you receive it. International awards just make one feel they can go as far as other countries can go. We always limit ourselves to Zambia but when we take part in these international awards, we actually discover that even Zambians can do It.” he says.
Shalala says Awards open up opportunities.
“A week after I won the Africa Fact Checking award in November 2014, I received an invitation from a Mozambican journalism organization called Sekelekani to go and speak at an international journalism conference on reporting on the extractive industry. Within three days of that invitation, I received another invitation from the Open Society Institute of Southern Africa (OSISA) to speak at their summer journalism academy. Unfortunately the dates for the two invitations clashed and I opted to go to Mozambique where I addressed Mozambican and Angolan journalists and civil society activists in the Indian Ocean resort town of Bilene. My target now is the CNN African Journalist of the Year Awards. In the past years i have entered twice and lost but I haven’t given up. Like Bembas say, one day kakabalika.” he says.

He says on a daily basis Journalists are insulted, beaten and ridiculed but one does not need to give up because there is no easy career on earth.

“All professions are challenging. Prospective journalists shouldn’t join the media fraternity for the fame or making connections. Journalism is a calling. You have to be passionate to do what reporters do. If you are not passionate, you will run away from the profession when faced by a few hardships.” he says.
Shalala says his role model is Rageh Omar, a Somalian-born British journalist who has worked for the BBC and Aljazeera.
“He has received several media awards for his courageous works and was one of a few western journalists to have covered the fall of Saddam Hussein in 2003. His determination to cover sensitive and dangerous stories inspires me a lot. Rageh is a war reporter and that’s what I aspire to do when I have chance to join the international media. I hope to report from war zones like Iraq, Afghanistan and Gaza.” he says.
He urges young people in various professions to try their luck.
“You may never know what response you may get. Don’t be defeated by the word ‘International’. You are also international yourself if you join others from other countries. Believe in yourself and your potential will take you a step further.” he says.
Shalala says he would want the world to remember him as a journalist who strived to raise governance issues and one who rose from a humble background in the villages of Nangoma area of Mumbwa to become an award winning journalist on the continent.
Aspire to reach your potential by competing with people who you think you can’t beat. You can do it. HAPPY NEW YEAR!
For comments: / 0966 461 943/ 0950 594 050
(This story was published by WM Media Pty Ltd on 4th January 2015 on their blog. The original story can be read here:

Thursday, 20 November 2014

Paul Shalala Wins African Journalism Award

Zambia National Broadcasting Corporation (ZNBC) reporter Paul Shalala has won second prize at the 2014 African Fact Checking Media Awards that were held at the Safari Hotel in Nairobi, Kenya last week on Friday.

The Africa Fact Checking Media Awards, which are sponsored and hosted by the France-based AFP News Agency and the Kenyan-based African Media Initiative, are held annually to award the best three investigative stories produced by African journalists.

AFP Foundation Director Robert Holloway, who announced the winners, said Mr Shalala’s investigative story on the inpact of mining investment on farmers in Zambia was a good piece of journalism worth recognising.

Mr Holloway, said a team of judges decided to award the second prize both to Mr Shalala and Kenyan journalist Victor Amadala because both their stories had a huge impact on society.

Ghanaian freelance journalist Edem Srema walked away with the first prize for his documentary on the illegal mining of gold in Ghanaian water bodies.

On September 25, 2013 Mr Shalala's 12 minutes investigative feature story on the impact on local farmers by multi-national mining investors in Mazabuka and Solwezi, was aired on TV's Morning Live programme.

Last year, the same story was shortlisted for the 2013 African Story Challenge Media Awards but Mr Shalala did not make it among the three winners.

Read the official announcement of the award winner at the Africa Check website:

The link to Mr Shalala’s original story is here:

The award winning 12 minutes video by Mr Shalala can be watched on this YouTube link: