HARARE, Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) Electoral Advisory Council (SEAC) is in Zimbabwe to assess the country’s readiness to hold free and fair elections in 2023. During SEAC’s engagement with journalists to assess the political environment, concerns were raised over the safety of media practitioners in executing their duties. Zimbabwe has a history of political violence during elections, and last year, journalists were reportedly assaulted while covering opposition rallies by suspected ruling party youths. Memory Chere, a journalist, said that neither of the political parties, Zanu PF and Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC), have shown an appetite to protect journalists, leaving media practitioners in a precarious position. SEAC Chairperson, Judge Ticheme Dlamini, stated that his delegation would hold crucial engagements with the ruling party, CCC, Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC), and civic society organisations to assess if Zimbabwe’s political environment is favourable for elections. Zimbabwe is expected to hold general elections between July and August this year.
Source -MasimbaNews ✍

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