Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation (ZBC) cameraperson Providence Maranelli was on 10 February 2020 assaulted by an MDC-Alliance security detail in Gwanda, Matabeleland South Province, moments after party leader Nelson Chamisa had addressed a meeting.
According to the Chronicle, Maranelli was assaulted while filming outside the venue of the meeting, Gwanda District Club, as Chamisa’s entourage was driving out. One of the security details disembarked from a vehicle and slapped him for filming the entourage.
A report was made at Gwanda Urban Police Station.
MISA Zimbabwe position
The MDC Alliance should restrain its security details from assaulting journalists conducting their lawful professional duties of reporting on events as they unfold in the public domain.
This follows the harassment of Robert Tapfumaneyi, a journalist with Sly Media Productions, on 21 January 2020 while covering the party’s meeting which was being addressed by Chamisa in Harare’s high-density suburb of Mbare.
MISA Zimbabwe urges political parties to ensure the safety and security of journalists at their meetings or rallies in the spirit of defending and upholding their constitutionally guaranteed right to media freedom which is critical to fostering an informed and enlightened citizenry.