The past year has been an exciting and challenging time. Bringing out the newspaper week after week, with no permanent staff and very little money, has been both exhausting and exhilarating. We would not have missed this experience for the world.
The constant feedback we receive, from Zimbabweans at home and abroad, has been a source of incredible inspiration and humility. So many are suffering in so many different ways, and they have reached out to us to encourage us in our self-appointed task of shining the light into the darkest places and telling the world the truth about Zimbabwe.
More to the point, we have succeeded in getting the truth about Zimbabwe into Zimbabwe itself – perhaps the greatest achievement as democratic space, freedom of expression and of the press have continued to be eroded at an alarming rate.
In the past year alone, the government, through its notorious spy agency, the CIO, has taken over three of the remaining handful of independent news sources in the country – the Daily Mirror, Sunday Mirror and Financial Gazette. Together with all radio and television, and all the Zimpapers titles, these newspapers now also spout the ruling Zanu (PF)’s cheap and coarse propaganda – denying Zimbabweans access to the accurate information they so desperately need to make informed decisions.
In less than one year, The Zimbabwean has overtaken both the Daily and Sunday mirrors in circulation. Not a bad start.
We were delighted that our website won the Highway Africa award for the innovative use of new media. The site, which contains the full contents of the newspaper bar a few photographs, continues to attract hundreds of thousands of readers from all over the planet every week.
Although we print in London and Johannesburg, our subscriber mailing list includes Zimbabweans and friends of Zimbabwe in every continent.
Thank you all for your support. Please do continue to buy and/or subscribe to The Zimbabwean at every opportunity as this is the only way we can continue to get the newspaper into the country and sell it at a considerable loss to ensure access to information on the part of those who need it most.
The celebration of our first anniversary is in many ways a celebration of freedom of expression for Zimbabwe. We felt the most practical way to share this with as many Zimbabweans as possible would be to give away as much as our meagre resources permit. Hence our “Celebrate with us” competition launched in this issue. Thanks to those friends who have joined us in providing the prizes. Enjoy!
It is our firm belief that as long as we can keep this window open for the light to shine in through, one day we will all be winners.Post published in: News