Home » Governance » Let’s Speak With One Voice – Prof Moyo

Information, Media and Broadcasting Services Minister Professor Jonathan Moyo yesterday said Zanu-PF’s resounding victory in last year’s harmonised elections has created an opportunity for Zimbabweans to unite in the same manner they did when the country attained independence in 1980. Prof Moyo was speaking at a discussion organised by the Zimbabwe Media Commission to commemorate World Press Freedom Day, that falls on May 3, last night.

“We have a new environment again,” he said. “As new as the one we had in 1980. In fact, we have some kind of spirit of 1980 prevailing in our country and from where we sit, the resounding victory of Zanu-PF in the last harmonised general elections has created an opportunity for us to go back to the beginning again so that now we can start to try to find each other again as Zimbabweans outside the partisan box, outside the box of party politics such that we have a new environment.

“How long it will last depends on what we do about it and each day that goes by without us doing something serious is a cost.”

Prof Moyo said Zimbabweans had written a home-grown Constitution that was unique as it had provided media freedom for every Zimbabwean.

“With this new environment, there is something particularly new which is the new Constitution and this new Constitution is similar in a way to the situation we had in 1980 when we also had a new Constitution, but a Lancaster one crafted by our erstwhile colonisers,” he said.

“This one has been crafted by ourselves, this is a truly homegrown Constitution. There maybe some people still with outstanding issues, but the fact is this was crafted by Zimbabweans after an outreach exercise and adopted after a national referendum.

“For the first time, we have a justiciable right. Freedom of the media for the first time is a justiciable right and this is in terms of Section 61 (2) of our Constitution and interestingly it says every person is entitled to freedom of the media.”

Prof Moyo said Zimbabwe had a background of polarisation that had negatively affected the country’s image and efforts to attract investment.

“We have come from a background of serious polarisation, we have been polarised not just the media, but in fact a polarised society, country deeply so, and if we have to do something about this and we have to try and find out whether the new Constitution helps us do something about this problem of polarisation,” he said.

“We need to do something about it because it has kind of damaged us as a country, certainly we have heard from the Minister of Finance (Patrick Chinamasa) that this has increased the cost of offshore money, it has increased the cost of doing business in our country, raising our sovereign risk.”

Prof Moyo said the new Constitution had provided an opportunity for every Zimbabwean to access information held by the State and its institutions as a way of holding public authorities accountable.

He said commemorations to mark the World Press Freedom Day would now be held at a date to be announced after the initial march organised by journalists was stopped by the police.

Source : The Herald