News / Africa

Zimbabwe Editor Charged with 'Insulting' Mugabe

Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe and his wife Grace wave to supporters and guests during celebrations to mark his 90th birthday on Feb. 23, 2014.
Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe and his wife Grace wave to supporters and guests during celebrations to mark his 90th birthday on Feb. 23, 2014.
A Zimbabwean newspaper editor faces sedition and other charges for creating a Facebook account that he allegedly used to reveal government secrets and insult the country’s president, a prosecutor said Saturday.
 
The case against Edmund Kudzayi editor of the state-owned Sunday Mail was the latest in string of cases brought by President Robert Mugabe’s government that critics say are aimed at shutting down independent media in the troubled African nation.
 
Kudzayi did not enter a plea when he appeared in a Harare court Saturday, two days after his arrest. He was ordered held until a bail hearing Monday.
 
“He is facing two charges; the first one is subverting the constitutional government; attempting to commit an act of terrorism, insurgency, banditry or sabotage,” State Prosecutor Tawanda Zvekare said. “The second one is undermining authority or insulting the president.”
 
Zvekare also said Kudzayi’s Facebook page referred to Mugabe as a tyrant or a dictator who stole elections.
 
Prior to last year’s election, Kudzayi was based in Britain. He and Mduduzi Mathuthu,  who now edits a sister paper called the Chronicle, used to run several online newspapers critical of Mugabe.
 
He faces life in prison if convicted.
 
Under Mugabe, Zimbabwe has instituted one of Africa's toughest media laws which has resulted in a crackdown on journalists. The government has indicated that it wants to repeal or amend some of the laws in line with the new constitution enacted last year, though journalism advocates doubt the government’s sincerity.
 
Elsewhere in Africa, a prominent Somali journalist was killed Saturday when his car exploded as he drove to work in the capital Mogadishu.
 
Police said they believe a remotely controlled bomb was attached to the car of Yusuf Ahmed Abukar, who also used the name Yusuf Keynan.  
 
Abukar worked for the private Mogadishu FM station Mustaqbal and also contributed to a Kenya-based United Nations radio service.
 
There was no immediate claim of responsibility.
 
Mogadishu has been hit by a string of attacks by al-Qaida-linked al-Shabab rebels who are fighting to overthrow Somalia’s fragile government.
 
Some information for this report was contributed by AFP.

You May Like

Video One Year After Thai Coup, No End in Sight for Military Rule

Since carrying out the May 22, 2014 coup, the general has retired from the military but is still firmly in charge More

Goodbye, New York

This is what the fastest-growing big cities in America have in common More

Job-Seeking Bangladeshis Risk Lives to Find Work

The number of Bangladeshi migrants on smugglers’ boats bound for Southeast Asian countries has soared in the past two years More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Charlie from: Johannesburg
June 23, 2014 9:29 AM
Very sad that there are zimbabweans who encourage divisions, why can't journalists use their influence to encourage blacks to build better communities.

by: Regai from: Scotland
June 22, 2014 1:14 AM
Hazvichataurwi here

by: Xaaji Dhagax from: Somalia
June 22, 2014 12:52 AM
White Americans use "N" word frequently against Barack Obama to exercise their alienable rights to insult any African American people be a president or homeless.
Well,what's okay in America should not be necessarily okay in Africa. Here we do not offend Mugabe. He is a good man!

by: James from: Denver
June 21, 2014 2:05 PM
Just like some Asian Country,stole election,supress the Press & freedom of expression.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Turkey's Main Opposition Party Hopes for Election Breakthroughi
X
May 22, 2015 10:23 AM
Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party has sought an image change ahead of the June 7 general election. The move comes after suffering successive defeats at the hands of the Islamist-rooted AK Party, which has portrayed it as hostile to religion. Dorian Jones reports from the western city of Izmir.
Video

Video Turkey's Main Opposition Party Hopes for Election Breakthrough

Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party has sought an image change ahead of the June 7 general election. The move comes after suffering successive defeats at the hands of the Islamist-rooted AK Party, which has portrayed it as hostile to religion. Dorian Jones reports from the western city of Izmir.
Video

Video Europe Follows US Lead in Tackling ‘Conflict Minerals’

Metals mined from conflict zones in places like the Democratic Republic of Congo are often sold by warlords to buy weapons. This week European lawmakers voted to force manufacturers to prove that their supply chains are not inadvertently fueling conflicts and human rights abuses. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Class Tackles Questions of Race, Discrimination

Unrest in some U.S. cities is more than just a trending news item at Ladue Middle School in St. Louis, Missouri. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, it’s a focus of a multicultural studies class engaging students in wide-ranging discussions about racial tensions and police aggression.
Video

Video Mind-Controlled Prosthetics Are Getting Closer

Scientists and engineers are making substantial advances towards the ultimate goal in prosthetics – creation of limbs that can be controlled by the wearer’s mind. Thanks to sophisticated sensors capable of picking up the brain’s signals, an amputee in Iceland is literally bringing us one step closer to that goal. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Afghan Economy Sinks As Foreign Troops Depart

As international troops prepare to leave Afghanistan, and many foreign aid groups follow, Afghans are grappling with how the exodus will affect the country's fragile economy. Ayesha Tanzeem reports from the Afghan capital, Kabul.
Video

Video Poverty, Ignorance Force Underage Girls Into Marriage

The recent marriage of a 17-year old Chechen girl to a local police chief who was 30 years older and already had a wife caused an outcry in Russia and beyond. The bride was reportedly forced to marry and her parents were intimidated into giving their consent. The union spotlighted yet again the plight of many underage girls in developing countries. Zlatica Hoke reports poverty, ignorance and fear are behind the practice, especially in Asia and Africa.
Video

Video South Korea Marks Gwangju Uprising Anniversary

South Korea this week marked the 35th anniversary of a protest that turned deadly. The Gwangju Uprising is credited with starting the country’s democratic revolution after it was violently quelled by South Korea’s former military rulers. But as Jason Strother reports, some observers worry that democracy has recently been eroded.
Video

Video California’s Water System Not Created To Handle Current Drought

The drought in California is moving into its fourth year. While the state's governor is mandating a reduction in urban water use, most of the water used in California is for agriculture. But both city dwellers and farmers are feeling the impact of the drought. Some experts say the state’s water system was not created to handle long periods of drought. Elizabeth Lee reports from Ventura County, an agricultural region just northwest of Los Angeles.
Video

Video How to Clone a Mammoth: The Science of De-Extinction

An international team of scientists has sequenced the complete genome of the woolly mammoth. Led by the Swedish Museum of Natural History in Stockholm, the work opens the door to recreate the huge herbivore, which last roamed the Earth 4,000 years ago. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble considers the science of de-extinction and its place on the planet
Video

Video Blind Boy Defines His Life with Music

Cole Moran was born blind. He also has cognitive delays and other birth defects. He has to learn everything by ear. Nevertheless, the 12-year-old has had an insatiable love for music since he was born. VOA’s June Soh introduces us to the young phenomenal harmonica player.

VOA Blogs