As so often in Africa, the Zambian press has been an easy scapegoat whenever the political climate deteriorates. In Zambia, where press offences come under criminal law, government partisans can use unfair laws to throw any journalist in prison at whim. In consequence, criticising the head of state is a high risk exercise for editorialists. In June, a radio commentator was questioned for having read out a fax containing a reader’s complaints and newspaper-sellers have been brutally attacked by militants in the presidential party. One of the most renowned journalists on the country’s sole privately-owned daily, The Post, Fred M’membe, was the subject of a 24-hour police manhunt after the head of state took legal action against him. He had published an editorial in which he questioned the capacity of Levy Mwanawasa to govern the country more seriously, condemning the president’s “foolishness, stupidity and lack of humility”.