Zim in process of reforming media laws, says Biti

2010-03-27 13:07

ZIMBABWE’s Finance Minister Tendai Biti has said Zimbabwe is

working to reform its harsh media laws, with work on a new constitution expected

to get under way next month.


“If we look at our situation both from a legal and operational

position, we are lagging behind” in media freedoms, Biti said when he opened a

two-day congress of the Federation of African Journalists (FAJ) in Harare

yesterday.


“The good news is that we have begun to take decisive steps to

ensure we extricate ourselves out of the media deficit.”


President Robert Mugabe’s government introduced stringent media

laws in 2002 which were invoked to expel foreign reporters and ban several

private newspapers, including a popular daily renowned for its anti-government

stance.


“Zimbabwean journalists have over the past few years operated under

some extremely difficult conditions,” Foster Dongozi, secretary-general of the

Zimbabwe Union of Journalists told the congress.


“This resulted in some journalists fleeing the country while others

were arrested or beaten up. We therefore hope that the anticipated media reforms

as laid out in the power-sharing deal will be implemented immediately.”


A new council with powers to regulate the media held its first

meeting last week while a daily banned in 2003 flighted an advertisement calling

back its former journalists and inviting new ones to apply for jobs.


Greater media freedom is one of the key demands of western donors,

who are insisting on political reforms before committing to major new aid to the

unity government.

 

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
0 comments
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

 
/News
Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.