ZIMBABWE – Harare – Zimbabwe’s information minister Christopher Mushohwe has lambasted the country’s private media for an alleged fixation with the first family and their dealings while ignoring matters of “national interest.
Speaking at a press briefing at his office in Munhumutapa on Wednesday, the minister warned media organisations against negative reportage and urged them to focus on ground-level issues.
Mushohwe claimed that the media constantly picked quarrels with government officials, therefore negatively affecting the image of the country and the state’s investment profile.
“A bad press, is simply bad, it is not good for the country, it is not good for government, and it is bad for business,” Mushohwe was quoted as saying.
Mushohwe said a new media policy would soon be crafted.
“We expect a high sense of professionalism and sensitivity to matters of national interest. I committed myself to working with proprietors to ensure good practices in the media,” Mushowe was quoted as saying.
“However, in the event that the hand of goodwill extended by government is not reciprocated in equal measure, then government will take corrective measures in terms of the law.”
Mushowe also warned government officials and members of the ruling Zanu-PF against taking their squabbles to the newspapers in an effort to discredit one another.
The minister’s comments came after several threats of a similar nature were made by top Zanu-PFofficials, with the First Lady Grace Mugabe going as far as offering journalists groceries and farms in order to gain favourable report.The First Lady previously accused journalists of “hate speech”, threatening to revoke press cards if journalists continued to refer to her as “controversial”.