Journalists’ arrest cause for concern: Jonathan Moyo [!?]

via Journalists’ arrest cause for concern: Jonathan Moyo – DailyNews Live 8 APRIL 2014

Information, Media and Broadcasting Services minister, Jonathan Moyo yesterday lambasted powerful and well connected individuals who use the police to arrest journalists in cases which he says should be solved at the civil courts.

This follows the arrest yesterday of the Daily News Group Editor Stanley Gama and senior writer, Fungi Kwaramba at the instigation of foreign businessman Kamal Khalfan of Oman.

Find below the full text of the comments Moyo sent to the Daily News.

“Media inquiries suggesting that the editor of, and a reporter at, the Daily Newshave been or might be charged with criminal defamation have caused us some concern at the Ministry.

We have previously placed on record that in our view criminal defamation is not only outdated and incompatible with the values and ideals of the liberation struggle with respect to human rights and freedoms but also, and more importantly, criminal defamation is inconsistent with our new Constitution.

In this connection, we are of the firm view that a criminal defamation charge cannot be sustained in the courts and should therefore be removed from our statute books in order to align the law with the new Constitution and to avoid wasting of police resources and time over a matter that has no constitutional basis.

The idea that powerful interests or individuals in our society find it easy to invoke criminal defamation against the media using the police is not only unconstitutional, it is also not in the public interest not least because the poor never ever invoke criminal discrimination against anyone.

This does not mean anyone has a right to lie but that defamation is better handled through civil and not criminal litigation in accordance with our new Constitution which in section 63(5) makes clear that freedom of expression and freedom of the media do not include malicious injury to a person’s reputation or dignity”. 

Accordingly, I hope constitutionality will prevail and that therefore the matter in question will not go beyond the inconveniences already suffered by all those concerned.”

COMMENTS

WORDPRESS: 17
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    Mixed Race 7 years ago

    It is hoped that our corrupt police are not being used by this foreigner after secret bribes were paid.They are quick to arrest journalists over a simple defamation issue as the minister Moyo has stated.We have real serious cases like sabotage to the economy by these looters but nothing so far has been done to stop the rot.
    I am pleased to see a minister standing up for the private media journalists which is really unique in Zimbabwe.Well done my Tsholotsho homeboy.I still oppose your party politics but I salute you for what you have done to improve the lives of your poor countrymen.We all need freedom of expression to make us mentally liberated and be capable to use our brains which have been allowed for too long to become docile.Those who have in the past tried to capitalize on the abnormal situation should now realise that you cannot subdue freedom of speech forever.

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    Tjingababili 7 years ago

    PROF DEBELE IS VERY SERIOUS THIS TIME! PRESIDENTIAL MATERIAL!

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    Jenandebvu 7 years ago

    A jackal in the sheep skin. When Moyo indicates to turn left he goes right. He is grandstanding to seek relevance. Is he not the doctor of POSA and AIPPA

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    Joseph Chimwanda 7 years ago

    Well said Honourable Minister, our police force needs retraining. They must uphold the constitution rather than seeking to enforce the unenforceable.

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      Mena Bona 7 years ago

      They don’t need retraining because they are thugs, not police! They own taxi businesses and are wearing police uniforms to carry out the excesses of ZANU PF. They are as much cops as someone wearing the uniform for a fancy dress party.
      More than half should be in prison, including the commissioner, and the rest should be fired and chased. Mugabe’s hoodlums dressed up like police. Nothing more.

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    How many times is this leopard going to change his spots? Refreshing comment though.

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    Proud to be Tsholotsho borning also Mixed Race! Obviously the police must have received something from these looters. For those who call Prof. Moyo a leopard,they must know that it is just a requirement to be able to adjust in order to advance as politics is never static but either evolutionary or revolutionary. The MDC-T of 2008 is no longer the same MDC-T today. It was not the same MDC-T while it was in the GNU. The rigid will be broken while those who adapt and adjust will progress and be part of the victors. Its time the Minister thinks of protecting genuine, objective, progressive and productive journalism against stinking rich looters and corrupt politicians who have been benefiting from polarization and political blindness.

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      I am sorry Bazur, although I am glad JM is standing up for this injustice doesn’t mean politics gives the right to politicians to behave like morons and destroyers and to put it in plain biblical terms, politics is not a licence to sin! I would want to see fruit in keeping with repentance for me to ever trust in JM. let us hope and pray that he may have taken the first step on a narrow path for the broad way leads to destruction.

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    Roving Ambassador 7 years ago

    Knowing ZANU, I for one still have to be convinced of Moyo’s Damascus moments. As I have mentioned before, he has no constituents and is asnwerable to ZANU.
    Remember the bad cop ,good cop tactics.
    Looters.

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    NBS if we were in a Sunday school lesson yes perhaps there would be common ground. But its politics and not religion. Let those who are affected benefit from Moyo’s current stance. The police are known to be very very corrupt protecting looters and high profile politicians. If Jonathan Moyo criticizes the arrest of journalists today I want to react to that today and not judge Moyo for what he was yesterday because yesterday is gone but I can act today and shape the future. I can respond to what he is doing today and together if we now have a common destiny move to get there. I mean a common destiny in attacking the corrupt police for arresting journalists on behalf of these looters! Rejection and refusal even of obvious facts exposes one’s naivety.

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      Bazur the earth is the Lords and fullness thereof. Some would separate politics and what you call religion. I can’t. For all belongs to the Creator and all will be judged by Him. Zimbabwe claims to be 80% Christian and if that is so then Christianity becomes very relevant in every sphere of our life in this nation. God is everything.

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    Msizeni Silwelani 7 years ago

    Can’t help but marvel at the professor. Go on Minister even if it means correcting your past mis-step. Knowing you have never lost a constitutional challenge. Salute to the honourable it shows why zanu pf never gave two thoughts to recall and reappoint you to, frst the politiburo then member of the august house.

    Its a pity the rest are militant than intelligent that makes the house of assemble a shadow of its real self.

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    This is the only men who can put Zanu to task. He is well read, intelligent, as well as, good at manipulation. Take them head on. They understand you well as their great teacher, a prophet and head twister. Even Jesus was not as a smart thinker ,as you are. Maybe who knows, you could unchain us from this bondge. I can’t think of anyone else.

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    Kamal Khalfan is From Zanzibar.Evil is being kind to him. Beautiful Irish wife ask her about him.

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    police corruption is now unbaearable. last month i hit some lady with my car. instead of taking the lady for check up. the police took me around the corner and askd for $130.00 so tht they make everythng go away. i paid the poor lady got nothng.

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    Gilbert Fungura 7 years ago

    imagine a country without any national social agenda for its weakest vulnerable citizens..no vision what soever on infrustrucural devepments.just lining their pockets…SHAME

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    Zambuko 6 years ago

    Grace.

    Robert?

    I see Jonathan is telling people not to make improper use of the police.

    Sometimes he gets things right.

    Yes, he has been most useful. A national treasure.

    You are too generous sometimes.

    Quite swift and smart.

    Very snappy at times.

    I wonder if he is any good at obituaries.

    I sure he will be. Why do you mention that?

    Nothing.