Zimbabwe: Sex Pests Rife in Media Rooms

Harare — SEXUAL harassment is reportedly rife in the Zimbabwean media, a development that is deterring young female journalists from pursuing their careers.

A senior executive alleged that young female graduates were no longer returning to newsrooms after the expiry of their internships for fear of being exploited.

Susan Makore, chief executive of AB Communications was speaking at a lecture in commemoration of the late prominent journalist, Bornwell Chakaodza.

"We must also bring on board issues of sexual harassment and how to address them in an amicable way within the newsrooms without instilling fear," she said.

"It is a fact that the majority of those affected are women. The problem I have now is that our newsrooms are becoming scary especially for young graduates."

Makore called on the Zimbabwe National Editors Forum (Zinef), Media Institute of Southern Africa (MISA) and Zimbabwe Union of Journalists (ZUJ) to urgently look into the issue and ensure that the newsrooms were safer for young journalists to work in.

"When some of the female student journalists come for internships, they will never want to come back because there are predators in our newsrooms," Makore charged.

She called for the implementation of stringent measures to prevent the occurrence of sexual harassment.

The government-controlled Zimbabwe Newspapers (Zimpaper) and Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation (ZBC), as well as privately owned Alpha Media Holdings (AMH) and Associated Newspapers of Zimbabwe (ANZ), dominate the local media sector.

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