from MERCY MUJURU in Gweru
GWERU, (CAJ News) – ZIMBABWE’S main opposition party, the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) Alliance, has been criticised for harassing journalists.
Press freedom group, Media Institute of Southern Africa (MISA), condemned MDC-Alliance’s nagging and hassling of journalists working for the state-owned Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation (ZBC) Midlands bureau, Tafara Chikumira, during a rally held in the Gweru town.
MDC-Alliance security blocked Charumira to cover a rally addressed by the party leader, Nelson Chamisa, accusing the television station of being biased in favour of the ruling Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front (ZANU-PF).
Only journalists from privately owned media were allowed to the rally.
“MISA-Zimbabwe condemns the intimidation and assault of journalists by members of political parties. The rights to both media freedom and access to information are explicitly guaranteed in the Constitution of Zimbabwe through Section 61 and 62 respectively,” MISA stated.
The regional press freedom organisation also urged journalists to report any cases of harassment and intimidation.
Zimbabwe’s media is highly polarised, which has compromised journalism standards. State-owned media are hostile to the opposition parties and brand them as stooges of the West. Private-owned media are largely sympathetic to the opposition.
– CAJ News