Journalists detained at Zanu PF headquarters
HARARE – Wendy Muperi and Wonai Masvingise, journalists with privately-owned newspapers, Daily News and NewsDay respectively, were on Friday, briefly detained by ZANU-PF security personnel while covering a demonstration at the party’s headquarters.
Muperi said: “Initially, all the five journalists covering the protest (by ZANU-PF supporters) were detained, but the other three were released after it was established that they were from the state media.”
She also said during interrogations, they were told that the independent media were championing the ‘regime change agenda’ and that they deserved to be taught a lesson to desist from being traitors.
The reporters were only rescued following the intervention of Zanu PF MP Webster Shamu who is also the Information and Publicity Minister in the coalition government.
The demonstration at the Zanu PF headquarters was conducted by disgruntled Zanu PF supporters who are up in arms against the imposition of candidates ahead of the party’s primary elections due on June 24.
Addressing journalists at a Media Institute of Southern Africa Zimbabwe-organised training workshop in Bulawayo last week, Misa-Zimbabwe senior programmes officer Nyasha Nyakunu said journalists were at risk of attacks ahead of elections, hence the need to be cautious.
“After the advent of the inclusive government, there were a few cases of attacks on journalists, but since the announcement of election dates, the attacks are beginning to increase,” Nyakunu said.
“We are now worried because of the cases, including the attack on Herbert Moyo (Zimbabwe Independent) and Mashudu Netsianda of Chronicle.
It is the severity of cases that is worrying like the incident where a journalist in Chinhoyi was severely beaten up. Let’s stay safe. There is no story worth dying for and there is no politician worth dying for.”