PPF condemns attack on office of local media organization in Harare
Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF) in a letter to Emmerson Mnangagwa, President of Zimbabwe has expressed concern over the attack on office of 263 Chat, Harare based local media organization.
PPF Secretary General Owais Aslam Ali in his letter, has condemned the attack on the reporter and office of 263 Chat and urged the authorities to immediately investigate the matter and hold the officers responsible for attacking media.
According to Media Institute of Southern Africa (MISA), Lovejoy Mutongwiza, reporter of 263 Chat was covering a joint operation of the Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) and Harare municipal police to arrest the vendors operating in a locality of the 263 Chat offices.
While covering the operation, a uniformed officer asked Mutongwiza to stop taking photos of the operation. As the reporter was obeying with this order, a mob of plain clothed officers started running towards him, the reporter fled for the safety of his life and his equipment.
A number of uniformed police officers and around ten plain clothed municipal officers followed Mutongwiza all the way to his office. While entering the premises of 263 Chat, one of the officers fired a teargas canister directly at the reporter attacking him with the shell on the abdomen.
The officers than thrown two other teargas into the offices and some of the officers blocked the doors preventing the staff from escaping the offices.
The police officers also seized cellphone of one of the staff of organization, because he was recording the attack through his cellphone. Mutongwiza reported the incident at the Harare Central Police station.