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VMCZ annual report 2013
Voluntary Media Council of Zimbabwe
October 08, 2013

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Executive summary

The following report captures activities undertaken by the Voluntary Media Council of Zimbabwe (VMCZ) during the period ending 30 September, 2012 to September 26, 2013. This report attempts to narrate activities and measure their impact and, in so doing, link such activities to the annual work plan submitted of the VMCZ for the period under review. This document is submitted for the benefit of and understanding of VMCZ members and media stakeholders. The period under review was clouded by an impending election whose holding was a contested issue between the parties in the inclusive government. The period also saw the constitution making outreach programme gather momentum resulting in the drafting of a new constitution for Zimbabwe. The constitution was taken to a referendum where Zimbabweans voted overwhelmingly for the adoption of the new constitution. The new constitution however, has freedom of expression enshrined in section 61 and 62 but unfortunately does not recognise media self-regulation in Zimbabwe. The constitution reinforced statutory regulation of the media in Zimbabwe in sections 248-250.

The uncertainty over the holding of the elections made it difficult to plan-ahead as conflicting statements always arose over the holding of the elections. The harmonised elections were ultimately held on 31 July 2013, and a winner, Zanu-PF emerged from the harmonised elections. Zanu-PF has since constituted a new government of Zimbabwe and ministers from the party have been appointed.

VMCZ has witnessed the impact of its advocacy and lobbying work with an increase in the number of complaints received in this period.

Above all, the work of VMCZ remains relevant as the organisation has created a platform for the media and members of the public to interact and engage over stories written in both the public and private media. This report captures details under the Media Complaints Programme area, Training and Media Development and finally Advocacy. A summary of activities is also captured in the report.

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