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Journalists petition Prime Minister over harassments
November 26, 2010
Zimbabwean journalists and representative media organisations on
26 November 2010 petitioned Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai expressing
grave concern with the increase in the number of cases involving
the arrests and harassment of journalists.
signed by more than 100 journalists and media practitioners was
also copied to President Jacob Zuma in his capacity as the SADC
appointed mediator to Zimbabwe. Zuma was expected in Harare on the
same day for meetings with President Robert Mugabe, Prime Minister
Tsvangirai and his deputy Professor Arthur Mutambara.
Noting the continued
intimidation and harassment of journalists, the petitioners said
the government should take all necessary steps to ensure the "cessation
of all harassment, intimidation, illegal detention and criminalisation
of the work of journalists, media practitioners and media houses".
is especially urgent given the continued detention of the Standard
journalist Nqobani Ndlovu, detained at Khami Prison. This development
comes against the arrest of freelance journalists Andrison Manyere
and Nkosana Dhlamini on the 30th of October 2010 while covering
the constitution making process in Harare.
Ndlovu who was
arrested on 17 November
2010 was released from remand prison on 26 November 2010 after the
High Court in Bulawayo decided against the State's appeal
for his continued detention.
which was drawn under the auspices of the Media
Alliance of Zimbabwe (MAZ) was presented by to Prime Minister
Tsvangirai in Harare on behalf of MAZ by MISA-Zimbabwe Advocacy
Committee Chairperson Kumbirai Mafunda, Committee Member Stanley
Kwenda and Advocacy Officer Tabani Moyo.
Union of Journalists (ZUJ), Federation
of African Media Women in Zimbabwe (FAMWZ), Zimbabwe National
Editors Forum (Zinef) and Media
Monitoring Project Zimbabwe (MMPZ).
Urging the inclusive
government to fulfil its commitments to media reforms, the petitioners,
among other issues, called for the reconstitution of the Broadcasting
Authority of Zimbabwe (BAZ) in terms of the amendments to the Broadcasting
Services Act (BSA) and:
pursue the need to transform the Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation
into a truly independent public service broadcaster, that is free
from undue political or editorial interference.
monitor the state controlled print media to ensure equal, equitable
and fair coverage of all political views to enable citizens access
to diverse views and opinions." The petition was also copied
to SADC Executive Secretary Dr Tomaz Salamao, Speaker of Parliament
Honourable Lovemore Moyo, Senate President Honourable Edna Madzongwe,
the Minister of Media, Information and Publicity Webster Shamu and
that of Information and Communication Technology Nelson Chamisa,
the MISA-Zimbabwe fact
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