Botswana journos fined

BULAWAYO - Two Botswana Broadcasting Service journalists have been fined Z$4000 for allegedly practicing without accreditation from the country's media regulatory body, the Media and Information Commission headed by Tafataona Mahoso.
Beauty Mokoba, a reporter and Koketso Seofola, a cameraman from

Botswana pleaded guilty of contravening a section of the Access to Information and Privacy Act (AIPPA) which calls for journalists to obtain accreditation from the MIC before practicing.
Mokoba and Seofola were fined $4000 or 40 days in prison for practicing without MIC accreditation. They were also fined $1000 or 20 days in prison after they pleaded guilty to contravening the Immigration Act when they entered the country illegally.
In his judgement, Plumtree senior resident Magistrate, Mark Dziba said the two were fined $5000 after he took account that they were first offenders and that they did not waste the court’s time after pleaded guilty to the allegations.
The agreed facts are that Mokoba and Seofola on 30 April at around 12pm the pair entered the country illegally through the Matsilodge border while doing a documentary on foot and mouth disease. The post is adjacent to Zimbabwe ‘s Mphoengs border post.
The documentary, for marketing purposes of Botswana beef to the European Union, was based on that country’s efforts in combating foot and mouth disease.
The two allegedly crossed into the country illegally after noticing that Zimbabwe was facing a foot and mouth outbreak at a river point separating Matsilodge and Mphoengs border post.
The two allegedly defied orders from Zimbabwe ‘s Department of Veterinary Services officials, who told them to seek permission from offices before crossing into the country for their documentary. They were arrested after Seofola, who was in the river separating the two countries, had started filming the Zimbabwean border post.
Mokoba and Seofola were both represented by Promise Ncube and Kucaca Phulu both from Coghlan and Welsh in Bulawayo. The state’s case was led by Prince Butshe-Dube. – CAJ News

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