VMCZ statement on ZMC Media Council

The Voluntary Media Council of Zimbabwe (VMCZ) notes that the Zimbabwe Media Commission (ZMC) intends to launch a statutory media council on Thursday, 13 September 2012.

While the VMCZ has always maintained a policy of engagement with the ZMC, it regrets to advise the public and stakeholders that it is unable to attend this particular launch. This is because the proposed council shall be established in terms of the Access to Information and Protection of Privacy Act (AIPPA). This is an Act that the media has consistently described and experienced as patently undemocratic due to its continued criminalisation of the media and freedom of expression.

As a result, the VMCZ, while recognizing the statutory obligations of the ZMC, remains persuaded that the move to establish a statutory council is undemocratic nor is it in the best interests of journalists, media freedom and freedom of expression.

Regardless of this unfortunate development, the VMCZ shall however continue its mandate as governed by its constitution, membership and stakeholders. We will continue to receive media complaints from the public as well continue with the active promotion of impartial and professional media ethics and media public accountability.

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