CPJ Blog

Press Freedom News and Views

Shehnilla Mohamed

Shehnilla Mohamed, a freelance journalist based in Johannesburg, is CPJ's southern Africa correspondent.

Blog   |   Zimbabwe

For Zimbabwean journalist Saize, the absurd is routine

For 37-year-old Zimbabwean freelance journalist Sydney Saize, left, enduring arrest and assault has become absurdly routine--and the circumstances routinely absurd. Take his most recent detention, in February. Saize was reporting on a mundane criminal case in Mutare, capital of the diamond-rich Manicaland province, when the story suddenly turned dramatic.

March 14, 2011 10:34 AM ET

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Blog   |   Egypt, Zimbabwe

Zimbabwe charges 45 with treason for viewing Egypt footage

Men and women arrested for watching footage of the unrest in Egypt wait outside a Harare courthouse. (Reuters)

The right to receive and impart information is a fundamental human right enshrined in the United Nations' Universal Declaration of Human Rights, but in Zimbabwe, watching news of North African and Middle East protests apparently amounts to treason. 

March 4, 2011 1:56 PM ET

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Blog   |   Mauritius

Mauritius no heaven for news media

CPJAmerican author Mark Twain once quoted a Mauritian as saying that heaven was copied after this Indian Ocean island paradise. Mauritius is cited today as one of the few havens of press freedom in Africa, but for Raj Meetarbhan, left, editor-in-chief of the island's largest newspaper L'Express, the country is fast losing its glow.

Meetarbhan was literally shaking with anger one recent day as I walked into his newspaper's office in Riche Terre, just outside of Port Louis, the island's largest city.

February 4, 2011 1:01 PM ET

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Blog   |   South Africa

In South Africa, judge orders probe into censorship at SABC

In South Africa, a judge this week ordered an official investigation into allegations that a former news executive for national public broadcaster SABC had muted critical voices and skewed coverage of major events--like the aftermath of Zimbabwe's 2005 election in favor of the ruling party. The ruling comes amid a contentious press freedom debate stirred by legislative proposals from the ruling African National Congress (ANC) that critics say would criminalize investigative journalism.

January 28, 2011 4:37 PM ET

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Blog   |   South Africa

South Africa resumes debate on secrecy bill

Protesters in Capetown decry secrecy bill. (Independent Newspapers Cape)

Parliamentary hearings on South Africa's Protection of Information Bill resumed last week with heated debate over provisions threatening to restrict press freedom and access to information. For journalists, much uncertainty remains over the final product and when it will be completed.

Blog   |   Zimbabwe

In Zimbabwe, a rare retreat in a media attack

Zimbabwean editor Golden Maunganidze reported harassment of vendors of his newspaper. (Masvingo Mirror)

In Zimbabwe, where journalists face constant harassment and repressive legislation, it's a rare occasion that the army would back off from its interference with an independent newspaper. But that's what seemed to happen this week in rural Gutu.

January 21, 2011 12:47 PM ET

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