Tuesday, May 21, 2024

MISA Malawi condemns manhandling of Journalist Jonathan Pasungwi

MISA Malawi, a journalistic organization dedicated to advancing unrestricted freedom of expression, access to information, and supporting a media landscape that is free, independent, diverse, and inclusive, has expressed strong condemnation for the assault on Jonathan Pasungwi, a reporter from Nation Publications Limited (NPL), by a group of Mzuzu University (Mzuni) students.

Yesterday Friday, a grouping of Mzuni students who were conducting demonstrations against tuition fees hike against government, manhandled Pasungwi, took his phone and deleted all the pictures for reporting on their demonstrations.

“We find it very disturbing that the university students who are expected to be intellectually mature and be in the forefront protecting freedoms violently attacked a journalist in the line of duty. It is even more worrying that the students violated media freedom in the course of enjoying their own freedom of assembly,” reads the statement signed by the MISA Malawi Chairperson Golden Matonga.

Further said Matonga:

“MISA Malawi reiterates the call for everyone, including demonstrators, to respect and uphold Constitutionally guaranteed press freedom at all times. Physically or verbally attacking journalists and forcefully deleting information during demonstrations is not only wrong but criminal.”

Matonga said journalists have a duty to inform the public on matters of national importance, including freedom of assembly and speech and should always be granted the right to safely report, which includes reporting on demonstrations.

“We urge law enforcers to investigate and bring to book everyone who assaulted Pasungwi in the line of duty. Let us strive to end impunity for all crimes against journalists,” concludes the statement.

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