By Tendai Guvamombe
Zimbabwean journalists have been urged to strengthen their reporting skills when reflecting on matters of peace, reconciliation and transitional justice in the country.
This came to light during a media training workshop held by National Transitional Justice Working Group Zimbabwe(NTJWGZ) in the Capital last Thursday 9th of June 2022.
During the engagement, a Legal Personnel, ICT and Advocacy Officer with MISA Zimbabwe Nompilo Simanje challenged the local media to adhere to professional ethics when reporting on transitional justice in Zimbabwe.
Fairness and balanced reporting among other aspects should always be observed.
“We urge media to be balanced and fairness when reporting sensitive issues on transitional justice. Avoid the use of language that promotes hatred to the extent of causing violence across all classes. Also avoid publicising materials that causes public discontent.”
She also said journalists should verify sources and information before publishing. If the reporting is inaccurate, would result in causing further harm in the midst of a conflict. Misinformation may also have traction in the digital era and advent of social media where information travels fast.
“Asses the materials that you produce for the public to consume or else you might fail to realize the traction it has on the society. Especially in this era of digital landscape and social media where information travels fast. Avoid the risk of igniting further violence. Always identify and select choice of sources. If information is inaccurate you might unnecessarily cause further conflict.”
The event was an eye opener for local journalists to strengthen their reporting skills on transitional justice in Zimbabwe.
The workshop was attended by members of the local press from print, broadcast and online media.