Police Bars Community Radio Initiative From Holding Road Show

Executive committee representative, Timothy Mpofu who spoke to Media Institute of Southern Africa (MISA- Zimbabwe) said the police denied them clearance for ‘security reasons’.

The police said the political environment was not conducive and that other people with political interests might attend the event since it was an open show.

The police also said that the community radio initiative should apply for a licence to the Broadcasting Association of Zimbabwe (BAZ) if they wanted to operate. This was despite the fact that the intended road show was specifically an awareness roadshow on what community radio is.

At the moment it is not very clear who constitute BAZ as the earlier board announced by Information and Publicity Minister Webster Shamu, chaired by Tafataona Mahoso, was rejected by the Movement of Democratic Change.It is still not clear whether a new BAZ will be put in place or whether applications for radio will also be handled by the newly created Zimbabwe Media Commission (ZMC), where Mahoso is also chief executive officer.

This denial of a police clearance for Nkabazwe community radio comes at the backdrop of a similar case where journalists in Masvingo and Bulawayo were barred from conducting a procession in commemoration of World Press Freedom Day with police citing ‘security reasons’.