Zimbabwe police ‘raid pirate radio station, arrest editor’

2013-03-02 09:15

Harare – Zimbabwe police raided a pirate radio station critical of President Robert Mugabe and arrested its editor amid a growing crackdown on media and rights groups ahead of crucial elections.

“The charges are along the lines of having radios that have not been declared,” said Kucaca Phul yesterday, the lawyer for Radio Dialogue, confirming the raid in the city of Bulawayo.

Editor Zenzele Ndebele was arrested during the raid, and some 180 radios were seized.

The station has been on air since 2001 and broadcasts current affairs programmes every evening.

Zimbabwe will on March 16 vote on a new constitution drafted by the shaky unity government of Mugabe and his arch rival Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai.

Elections to end the four-year government between the two leaders will be held later in the year.

The run up to the polls has been marked by violence against political activists, media and civil society groups.

In 2008, supporters of Tsvangirai’s Movement for Democracy (MDC) were targeted by security forces in what was seen as state-sponsored violence.

The violence forced Tsvangirai to withdraw from the 2008 presidential run-off.

This week police vowed to clamp down on civic society organisations ahead of the crucial vote, saying they pose a “serious security threat”.

Two weeks ago, police raided the offices of a local poll observer group, the Zimbabwe Election Support Network (ZESN), by breaking part of their perimeter wall and confiscating documents.

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
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


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.


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.