HomePoliticsParly Speaker Challenged Over ZMC Nominees

Dimaf: Gono urges protests over funds

A HARARE publishing consultant Roger Stringer has challenged Speaker of Parliament Lovemore Moyo to clarify the selection process of nominees to the Zimbabwe Media Commission after accusing legislators of political horse-trading during the exercise.

In a letter written to Moyo on January 4, Stringer claimed that he had been dropped from the final list of nominees submitted to President Robert Mugabe to accommodate Zanu PF politicians.

Stringer, according to the letter, first expressed his concerns to MDC-T Senator Obert Gutu, who chaired a panel of interviewers for the constitutional body. Gutu reportedly referred him to Moyo.

The speaker chairs the parliamentary Standing Rules and Orders Committee (SROC) that was tasked to carry out the public interviews last August.

“I am therefore now writing to protest about the way in which the above process has been handled by the Standing Rules and Orders Committee of parliament,” reads Stringer’s letter. “Although it had been promoted as an objective, independent process, it appears to have ended up being politically driven. As a participant in that process who had no party-political affiliation and trusted that it would be conducted in a professional manner, I believe that not only I but the Zimbabwean public as a whole are owed an explanation of what took place.”

Following the interviews at Parliament Building, media reports were that Stringer had ranked sixth out of the 27 candidates that were vying for nomination onto the ZMC.

SROC, according to the constitution, was required to submit 12 applicants to the president who would then appoint eight commissioners.

Mugabe last month appointed former ZBC newscaster Godfrey Majonga as chairperson of ZMC deputised by ex-Daily News editor Nqobile Nyathi.

Others appointed to the commission were Millicent Mombeshora, Miriam Madziwa, former Zimbabwe Union of Journalists president Mathew Takaona and journalism lecturer Lawton Hikwa.

Former Zimbabwe ambassador to China Chris Mutsvangwa, who was reported to have failed to make it to the final list, was also appointed to the commission amid claims that Zanu PF had lodged a complaint against the original list saying is was “fraudulent”.

“While I am aware that parliament was under no legal obligation to follow the procedures that it chose, the fact remains that the SROC undertook to invite members of the public to be considered for nomination according to a specified selection process,” Stringer wrote.

Moyo did not respond to written questions from the Zimbabwe Independent on Stringer’s case, although on Wednesday he had acknowledged receipt of Stringer’s letter.

 

Bernard Mpofu

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