Media Council welcomed

We welcome moves by the Media Alliance of Zimbabwe to set up a voluntary and independent council to oversee ethics and standards in the media.

This is the way things should be in a democracy. Popularly elected governments have no business running media councils – or indeed interferin

g with the media in any way.

We have always been critical of the Media and Information Commission – as it was neither representative nor desirable. Its chairman, Tafataona Mahoso, is a self-confessed enemy of the independent media. Instead of nurturing freedom of press in Zimbabwe, the commission has been responsible for the closure of five newspapers in less than five years.

It is common knowledge that Zimbabwe’s media is one of the most severely regulated in the world with an array of harsh state laws under which many journalists have been arrested, harassed and tormented on numerous occasions.
We pledge our support for the proposed Media Council and will be more than willing to subject ourselves to its rulings should ever a dispute over our coverage arise.

Even if the government does not support this initiative, we in the independent media will do so.

We salute Byo mayor
In a direct and tragic indictment against the policies of the ruling party, more than 40 people died as a direct result of malnutrition in Bulawayo during February. This brings the total for the first two months of the year to 77 such deaths – but this is merely the tip of the iceberg.

Bulawayo is the only place in the country where such figures are available – because the MDC mayor Japhet Ndabeni-Ncube has refused to be silent in the face of increasing malnutrition-related deaths in his city.
He has been insulted and threatened by government officials for releasing the figures, but maintains he needs them to help his council plan properly for feeding schemes at various schools in a desperate effort to prevent more deaths.
We need more mayors like him.

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