Media violations and victories

Remigio Matangira, MP for Bindura South, on 11 February 2019 threatened and intimidated journalists covering a Parliamentary Portfolio Committee meeting in Harare.

Matangira made the threats as he emerged from a highly charged meeting of the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Mines and Energy in Parliament that was open to members of the public.

The meeting was disrupted when Committee Members moved a motion to suspend MP Themba Mliswa, as chairperson of the Committee.

The meeting degenerated into threats and verbal assaults as Mliswa challenged the proposed suspension. Matangira threatened to damage the equipment of journalists as he emerged from the meeting, together with other Committee Members. The journalists were waiting outside the Committee Room.

MISA Stance:

MISA Zimbabwe condemns the MP’s behaviour as dishonourable and unbecoming as he has no right whatsoever to threaten and intimidate duly registered journalists exercising their constitutional duties of informing the public on events as they unfold.

As public officials, parliamentarians should be exemplary in their behaviour as they have an unwavering duty to uphold democratic and constitutional principles that include media freedom, freedom of expression and access to information.

Meanwhile, MISA Zimbabwe staff is on standby to assist media practitioners injured or arrested in the line of duty. The MISA Hotline is 0784 437 338.