While the media, particularly print, have been able to innovate and survive these challenges, the COVID-19 pandemic presents an existential threat to an industry that was already limping in the SADC region.
MISA Zimbabwe takes note of the chain of events that have transpired in these last few months in Zimbabwe, which seem to point to increased attempts by the government to promote and entrench mass surveillance of citizens.
The Zimbabwe Media Commission (ZMC) has been ordered by the High Court to suspend its accreditation process following an urgent application instituted by the Zimbabwe Online Content Creators Trust (ZOCC).
Tanzanian journalist Mary Victor, with the Raia Mwema newspaper was charged for sedition after she allegedly shared a video clip of patients allegedly fleeing a COVID-19 centre in that country.
Governments in Southern Africa are coming up with several regulations under the pretext of regulating the scourge of misinformation, particularly in the COVID-19 period, yet, they are using these laws to target dissenting voices, civil society, the media and opposition political parties.
The Parliament of Zimbabwe says it will adhere to requisite parliamentary processes following the gazetting of the Cybersecurity and Data Protection Bill notwithstanding the Coronavirus lockdown measures and restrictions.
Zimbabwe Online Content Creators Trust (ZOCC) has filed an urgent chamber application with the High Court seeking an order for suspension of the Zimbabwe Media Commission’s accreditation process set to commence in Harare on 26 May 2020.
As the continent commemorates Africa Day on 25 May, it is worrying that the majority of Southern African countries, typical of fragile states, are taking advantage of the outbreak of the deadly Coronavirus to tighten their grip on power.
MISa Zimbabwe’s analysis of the recently gazetted Cybersecurity and Data Protection Bill, 2019.
MISA Zimbabwe is calling for a reduction of data prices and engaging various stakeholders to promote the constitutional right to access to information which plays a crucial role in promoting public health during this time.