Zimbabwe

New Zealand reporter held in Zimbabwe

2012-04-20 11:22

Special Report

EFF to Mugabe: Political power shouldn't be taken to the grave
EFF to Mugabe: Political power shouldn't be taken to the grave

Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe should step down and allow other Zimbabweans to take over from him, the EFF has said, adding that "political power should not have to be taken to the grave".

Harare - Zimbabwean police have arrested a journalist from New Zealand for reporting from the southern African country without accreditation, state media reported on Friday.

Hammond Robin Nicholas, 37, was arrested on Monday together with a Zimbabwean charity worker, Bertha Chiguvare, 31, in the border town of Beitbridge, 580km south of Harare.

The two were allegedly working on a story about "irregular" migration between Zimbabwe and its neighbour South Africa and did not have accreditation.

"They misrepresented to the department of immigration that they were on holiday," police superintendent Lawrence Chinhengo told The Herald newspaper.

"In fact they were on a mission to investigate how illegal immigrants manage to cross to South Africa."

They were charged with violating "Protected Areas and Places and Immigration Acts" and would appear in court on Friday.

Previous arrest

According to the paper, Nicholas, a Cape Town resident, told police that he was a teacher and photographer while Chiguvare works for Save the Children in South Africa.

Video and digital cameras as well as a voice recorder with excerpts of an interview were found in their possession.

Nicholas was arrested previously in Zimbabwe for a similar offence, Chinhengo said.

The media in Zimbabwe is tightly regulated and journalists are not allowed to work in the country without accreditation.

Several local journalists were arrested last year on various charges that included defamation.

Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai, a long-time rival of President Robert Mugabe, has vowed to abolish the country's Access to Information and Protection of Privacy Act, which bans foreign journalists from working permanently in the country.

Read more on:    zimbabwe  |  media

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