It was Graca Machel’s first public appearance since the death of her husband Nelson Mandela six months ago, so of course every journalist wanted an interview. But Machel’s office was quite firm, no interviews and even her appearances at the third Partnership for Maternal, Newborn and Child Health (PMNCH) conference, were brief.
Participants at a three-day workshop on the dangers of smoking were shocked into silence as medical doctors, academics and activists churned out statistics and evidence showing how tobacco use has become the largest cause of preventable deaths in the world. They also heard that cigarettes were more addictive than cocaine.
Editors Note: A news story set off a nationwide campaign to contain measles which was killing young children in Zambia.
A newly employed reporter came to see me a couple of days after she started working. While waiting for a driver to pick her up after she had finished an assignment, she overheard two nurses talking about an increase in measles in children. They were speculating whether there was an outbreak.
She was unsure about how to get verification for the story.