The Zimbabwe Republic Police have intensified their protracted media crack down, and efforts to intimidate and censor non-partisan journalists in the country.
Several journalists have been unlawfully summoned, questioned, detained, and harassed in the last few days, with the offensive intensifying in the last week.
Mlondolozi Ndlovu, the local chief correspondent was this morning sought after by Police and individuals suspected to be security agents working on behalf of the state (commonly known as CIO – members of the secret Police)
Earlier reports even stated he had been forcibly abducted and / arrested, amid desperate efforts to locate him.
Towards end of day, his safety was confirmed, although the earlier reports could not be dismissed.
Detectives from the Criminal Investigations Department have indicated that they desire to speak to him over a story he reported and was published here on the 21st of January about opposition parties declaring war against Robert Mugabe’s Zanu PF.
Police have requested him to report to the feared CID Law and Order department at Harare Central Police Station tommorow morning.
The assault on our correspondent follows that of Earnest Mudzengi, the director of the Media Centre in Harare, who was on 7 April 2016 released without charges after being detained for questioning at Harare Central Police Station for almost eight hours.
Mudzengi was picked by plainclothes policemen from the Media Centre in Harare in connection with stories published on the website: www.zimsentinel.com.
Police are also reportedly keen to question Malvern Mkudu, the Media Centre’s research and editorial consultant.
The questioning and detention of journalists in Zimbabwe despite being illegal under the new constitution has persisted, with the regime desperate to force favourable reporting in the 4th estate.
More to follow….