The principal director in the Ministry of Economic Planning has told
our correspondent he will not be allowed to cover the International
Investment conference in Harare that begins Thursday, because he is not
accredited with the legally defunct Media Information Commission (MIC), reports Tichaona Sibanda for SW Radio Africa.

Our Harare correspondent Simon Muchemwa said the director, who is personally accrediting the journalists, said that even those with accreditation would have to be vetted, before being allowed to cover the conference.

Morgan Tsvangirai, Robert Mugabe and Arthur Mutambara will share the stage at the conference in Harare, which has been publicized as an opportunity to question the three leaders directly about the unity government.

Elton Mangoma, the Economic Planning Minister, told us on Wednesday those wanting to invest in the media were welcome. But this latest attempt to block the media will encourage no investment at all. Muchemwa said journalists without accreditation would only be allowed in the conference if they pay $150 to enter as individuals and not as journalists.

This comes just a short time after a High Court judge ruled that the MIC is a defunct body. Four journalists, Stanley Gama, Valentine Maponga, Stanley Kwenda and Jealous Mawarire last month successfully challenged in the High court the government's requirement of accreditation with the MIC, as the body is no longer operational.

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