Mushowe blasts media polarisation, abuse

HARARE - Information, Media and Broadcasting Services minister Christopher Mushowe has slammed media polarisation and its abuse by politicians, saying it is destroying the country.

He said this in a speech read on his behalf by his deputy Thokozile Mathuthu at the commemorations of World Press Freedom Day in Harare yesterday.

“I want to kill the divisive spirit in the media....The description of our media as either private or public does not exist in my vocabulary,” Mushowe said.

“As Information... minister, I superintend over the media industry in Zimbabwe without exception,” he said. 

“The composition of your various associations ...which bring together players from the public and private media augurs well for our industry because it provides platforms on which to address common concerns.”

“This helps to kill media polarisation we are witnessing in our country today and fuelled by partisan interests as political parties begin jockeying for space in the build-up to next year’s general elections,” Mushowe said.

“Media polarisation is unhealthy, counter-productive, unprofessional and extremely deplorable. It does not benefit our nation but short-changes our people by serving them a daily diet of half-baked news and misleading information.

“I don’t doubt that you will rise to the occasion today and find solutions to this scourge which has afflicted our media each time our nation goes to general elections. Allowing our media to be abused by politicians does not help build a cohesive and professional industry. Such abuse is a bane on our society, divisive and retrogressive.”

This also comes as journalists have requested to meet President Robert Mugabe over the attacks and intimidation of colleagues.

Associated Newspapers of Zimbabwe group editor Stanley Gama said the succession battle in Zanu PF had seen some journalists being harassed and threatened, as political players in the ruling party use all sorts of methods to position themselves to succeed Mugabe.

“This is why we want to meet Mugabe himself and discuss our concerns, especially the threats aimed at us journalists. I believe the president has the powers to call his people to order and stop harassing, intimidating and threatening journalists,” he said.

“Some of us have had attempts on our lives and one of my cases has been reported to the police whom I believe are still investigating and will bring the culprits to book,” Gama said 

“This day is therefore important in that it reminds us as journalists to resist attempts to silence and intimidate us.”

“Some of us will continue to tell it like it is, without fear or favour and we will resist the intimidation which has increased in the last few months,” he vowed.

The media practitioners also discussed the issue of fake news which they said was affecting professional journalism and ethics.

Comments (3)

What a phoney. This guy is one of the most inept ministers we've had. In the same category as Chombo, Made, Dokora. Just useless. All they're good for is singing for their supper.

Moe Syslack - 4 May 2017

This one is a donkey from Bocha full of stinking and vernomous tongue zvozikanwa zeroooo

baba Gedza - 4 May 2017

Mushohwe might b right,he must only allow public criticim of Mugabe & his inner circle in the public media on their over stay on power-all the media whether private or public will find the same stores to report in the market

addmore gudo - 5 May 2017

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