Unidentified MDC Alliance security personnel grabbed and confiscated a Canon 6D digital camera belonging to local journalist Ari Goldstein during the party’s rally in Glen View, Harare on 1 September 2019.
Goldstein is the founding journalist of online publication, State of the Nation.
According to Goldstein, unidentified members of the MDC Alliance security team harassed him during his coverage of the rally. He told MISA Zimbabwe that the harassment was initially to deter him from taking any pictures of the rally proceedings.
He then decided to leave the venue to avoid further harassment. However, on his way to his vehicle, a group of about nine men he believes were part of MDC Alliance leader Nelson Chamisa’s security details, accosted him and took his Canon 6D camera.
Goldstein reported the matter at Glen View police station under RRB 4706412.
MDC Alliance secretary-general Charlton Hwende condemned the harassment of journalists at the party’s events. He invited Goldstein to contact the party so that the matter can be fully investigated.
MISA Zimbabwe is assisting Goldstein with the legal services necessary to recover his camera.
MISA Zimbabwe Position
MISA Zimbabwe condemns this violation of Goldstein’s media freedoms, in particular, the confiscation of his camera.
MISA Zimbabwe has in the past engaged political parties across the political divide to ensure that their respective members and supporters do not interfere with the lawful work of journalists.
MISA Zimbabwe calls upon the MDC Alliance to ensure that the confiscated camera is recovered and returned to the journalist.