Zimbabwe papers practise self-censorship US Ambassador

charles_ray2United States of America Ambassador to Zimbabwe Charles Ray (pictured) has said that despite the fact that the country media has been liberalised the environment still remains threatened by legal impediments leading many media houses to practise self-censorship.

Speaking during the commemoration of the World Freedom Day, Ray described a free media as critical to the well being of a vibrant society and democracy.

Zimbabwe media environment remains threatened by legal and administrative impediments. Journalists and publishers continue to be under threat for doing their work with increased self-censorship for fear of criminal defamation suits, said Ray.

Despite the opening up of the media draconian pieces of legislation such as the Access to Information and Protection of Privacy Act (AIPPA), the Public Order and Security Act (POSA) and the now commonly used the Criminal (Codification) Act are still in place.

The Inclusive Government has been able to inject some resemblance of free press in the country by granting licenses to various media organisations some of which are already publishing but there remains huddles as newspapers vendors often have papers burned while newsrooms are broken into and journalists are questioned when they write about what are considered as state secrets.

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