Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

2908short news

Expand Messages
  • Christine Chumbler
    Jan 24, 2002
    • 0 Attachment
      Zimbabwe cracks down on
      'illegal' journalists

      Harare | Thursday

      ZIMBABWEAN authorities are searching for several foreign
      journalists who entered the country as tourists in defiance of a
      ban on most visiting correspondents, a senior government official
      said on Thursday.
      The state controlled daily Herald said that its "investigations"
      established that reporters from Britain's Guardian and Telegraph
      newspapers, the London-based Economist, South Africa's
      Sunday Times "and a few other foreign scribes" had declared
      themselves as holidaymakers on arrival here and were illegally
      working as journalists.
      Several of the "illegal" journalists have been covering the
      worsening repression in the run-up to presidential elections in
      March and their reports have been published under their names in
      their newspapers.
      "Our net is closing in on them and we should be able to account
      for all of them by the end of the day," said George Charamba,
      secretary for the department of information.
      Visiting journalists have to obtain accreditation from the
      information department before being allowed into the country.
      Early last year, the regime ended its previously open policy and
      only a handful of foreign correspondents have been granted
      accreditation.
      It says the BBC is "banned" from coming here.
      "What makes the whole development quite sinister is the fact that
      these journalists have got intelligence cover from a hostile state
      because they are on assignment," Charamba said, without
      explanation.
      The Herald claimed the journalists were staying in hotels and
      "MDC safe houses."
      The announcement came as deepening confusion surrounded
      controversial information minister Jonathan Moyo's attempt to
      introduce new press laws that will allow the regime to shut down
      the country's independent press, stop its journalists working, and
      cut off reporting to the outside world of the escalating crisis in the
      country.
      Wednesday's debate on the bill was delayed for the fourth time in
      just over a week, amid signs of angry opposition to the bill from
      MPs of the ruling Zanu-PF party.
      Meanwhile, a journalist from Madagascar who had planned to
      spend her vacation with friends in Zimbabwe was turned away
      when she arrived at the airport in Harare, she said from
      Johannesburg.
      Nivo Sahondra Randriamasimanana, a journalist for a French
      magazine, Capricorne, was allowed to stay at the airport only a
      few minutes before being put on the first plane leaving for
      Johannesburg.
      Passports from Madagascar state the holder's profession, and
      when immigration authorities saw the word "journalist" they did
      not even ask whether she had come to Zimbabwe for work or for
      tourism, she said.
      "They really treated me like a criminal," Randriamasimanana
      said. Tourists to Zimbabwe can normally pay for a visa at the
      airport in Harare, but journalists coming to report on the country
      must apply one month in advance from their home country for a
      special visa. - Sapa, AFP

      *****

      And in South Africa, safety issues in schools are finally getting attention...

      http://www.mg.co.za/cgi-bin/schlabo/potd.pl
    • Show all 26 messages in this topic