Journalist arrested

Source: Journalist arrested | Herald (Africa)

Herald Reporter

Journalist Sydney Kawadza was yesterday arrested on allegations of extortion.

Kawadza, who is Zimpapers Mashonaland West Bureau Chief, was arrested by Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission officers and spent the night at Rhodesville Police Station in Harare.

He is expected to appear in court today.

National police spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi confirmed Kawadza’s arrest saying a trap was set following a report of extortion.

“I will only be able to give you full details tomorrow,” Asst-Comm Nyathi said.

According to Kawadza, he was arrested at the instigation of a Government official who is bitter over a story he wrote on a land scandal in Mashonaland West Province.

In the story, senior officials at the Ministry of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing head office were said to have been exposed for interfering with the allocation of land in favour of their cronies in the lucrative Mt Hampden area.

This was revealed when Zvimba Rural District Council officials appeared before the Commission of Inquiry into Urban State Land last month.

“After I wrote the story, it seems this guy wanted revenge so he reported me for demanding a bribe.

“What actually happened is that I requested to buy bricks on account and he agreed, but in the morning he called me to his office and gave me US$200 instead.

“I was then arrested by officers who produced a trap order with the serial numbers for all the notes,” Kawadza said.

“I did not demand any bribe and I will prove that in court.”