If it is all good and well to hold public officers accountable then I think it should also be good and well to hold the media accountable.
One of them is voted directly by the public while the other is self-appointed and seeks free information to publish in a scheme of profit making.
What boggles the mind is that they say they have a right to such information as it represents press freedom. Does it make sense for someone who sells apples to demand free apples from a farmer in order for him to sell them and make his profit, based on his right to carry on commercial enterprise within Namibia?
Periodically over the years we have seen politiciansí salaries published in the headlines (right to privacy superseded by accountability and transparency), a case in point is the Presidentís remuneration which will be increased for the first time in seven years (since 2005).
I found the reports to be sensational at most and if you ask me from an honest perspective, the President doesnít earn that much.
If you remove non-cash benefits which are obligatory for the security of any head of state such as vehicle travel and air travel you will be left with a N$57,705 per month.
Now compare this figure with any CEO in any parastatal, or any listed company in Namibia to see just how the leader of the nation is compensated in comparison to some leaders of institutions.
Shouldnít The Namibian have been mobilising resentment at the salaries of the Tjivikuas etc who lead a single institution?
If the media is the voice of the people, is it not high time we the people demand to know just how much each of the editors (including Gwen Lister, Tangeni Amupadhi and others) get per month based on the most recent audit verified figures? For, they do trade in the relatively cheap (free) commodity of public information secured by press freedom.
We demand to know this, as part of our own campaign for access to information as we the public are dependent on the agenda they set for us.
It is common knowledge that the President has not received an increase since taking office hence we would also like to know of all the bonuses and increases in editorial pay over the past seven years.
I for one, believe that the Presidentís salary is on par with other southern African leaders, I also believe that the first ladyís N$60,000 per annum does indeed need to be increased as N$5,000 per month is not proportionate to the work that this particular first lady has done for our country.
I thank the media for being our information police and urge them to also to be accountable to their readership, as by publishing the requested details, one will see a more complete picture of whether or not this is another case of the pot calling the kettle black.
(nom de plume as an exercise of my freedom of expression and right to privacy.)
Note: Your idea of what constitutes free expression by the media and citizens boggles the mind. How does reporting about an important issue such as this use of tax money amount to sensationalising? Editor