(This story has been updated after an earlier statement was edited, the report now reflects this)
Bindura – Journalists from Zimbabwe’s Bus Stop TV were threatened by Zanu PF youths in Bindura today over what the youths claimed was negative coverage of the solidarity march held for Grace Mugabe more than a week ago.
The reporters had their press cards confiscated, before being attacked by a group of thugs wearing Zanu PF regalia.
The reporters fled.
Lobby group, The Young Journalists association (YOJA) condemned the actions in the strongest possible terms.
In a statement released by their information office, YOJA expressed its worry that such actions violated the constitution.
“The Young Journalists association (YOJA) condemns in the strongest of terms the recent threats and chasing away of the popular Gonyeti and the Bus Stop TV comedian crew attack at a Zanu PF rally in Bindura this afternoon by a group of Zanu PF youths at the function.
President Mugabe also attacked journalists for writing critical information against his party Zanu PF.
YOJA views this attack as a threat to freedom of the media and access to information as guaranteed by the country’s constitution.
YOJA leadership has met the Bus Stop TV member Luck Aaron who had his press card taken away from him but safely arrived in Harare.”
The community for protection of journalists does not rank Zimbabwe among its most repressive states regards media freedom, although they do note that since 1980 1 journalist has been killed for doing his job, while another one was kidnapped and remains missing.
YOJA has since updated its statement to reflect and indicate that the Bus Stop TV crew were escorted out of the venue, had their cards confiscated and told never to cover Zanu PF events again.
A statement by the victim confirmed this.