Zim marks Press Freedom Day

Online Desk |  1 year ago | local

Zimbabwe made great strides in the past four years in media reforms as Government is continually engaging stakeholders since the coming in of the Second Republic, Deputy Minister of Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services Kindness Paradza said yesterday.

He said this on the side-lines of the World Press Freedom Day regional commemorations organised by the Media Institute of Southern Africa (MISA).

Today is World Press Freedom Day and is running under the theme, “Journalism under digital siege”.

Zimbabwe’s main celebrations will be held in Bulawayo at the National University of Science and Technology campus. 

Minister of Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services Monica Mutsvangwa is expected to be the guest of honour. 

African Union Head of the African Governance Architecture Ambassador Salah S Hammad, was the guest of honour, during the commemorations. The event was also the launch of the Press Freedom in Southern Africa Report. The UNESCO Regional Director Dr Lidia Arthur Brito was in attendance.

The Deputy Minister of Information Communication Technology Postal and Courier Services Dingumuzi Phuti and chairperson of the Parliamentary Committee of Information Publicity and Broadcasting Services Sipho Mokone. Journalists from Zimbabwe, Lesotho, the kingdom of ESwatini and Botswana came together to commemorate together reflecting on the theme and their media landscape in their respective countries.

Deputy Minister Paradza said Zimbabwe has made steady progress in the protection of journalists and repealing draconian media laws such as the Access of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (AIPPA).

Deputy Minister Paradza urged journalists to practice Solutions journalism which is a rigorous and compelling reporting about responses to social problems. 

Deputy Minister Paradza said the Zimbabwe Media Practitioners Bill will make the profession robust and have a code of ethics.

In his remarks, the guest of honour, Ambassador Hammad said Press Freedom and the protection of journalists was important to attaining Vision 2063, Africa’s blueprint and master plan for transforming the continent into the global powerhouse of the future.

He urged that more women and youth be journalists as they constitute the majority of the continent’s population. 

The UNESCO Regional Director, Dr Brito said the UN agency is committed to ensuring the safety of journalists in the region.

Journalists from Southern Africa such as Lesotho, Kingdom of Eswatini and Botswana presented the media landscape in their countries.