THE Speaker of Parliament Lovemore Moyo on Tuesday sent the final list
of applicants selected to sit on the new Zimbabwe Media Commission to
Robert Mugabe for approval, writes Tichaona Sibanda for SW Radio Africa.

SW Radio Africa has learnt that the Presiding Officers of Parliament, who include the Speaker, his deputy, the Senate President, her deputy and the Clerk of Parliament Austin Zvoma approved the list before it was dispatched to Mugabe.

Tongai Matutu, the Chairman of Parliament’s legal and procedures committee commended the way the whole process was carried out, despite protestations from the state media that, ‘certain pro-ZANU PF applicants were deliberately failed by the panellists.’

“There was nothing sinister about the whole process, anyone condemning the process is simply crying foul over nothing. It was agreed by all parties and clearly spelled out that no political considerations will be made, and that any candidate who will be selected shall be selected according to their integrity, capacity and knowledge in the field,” Matutu said.

The state media had sought to undermine the process by claiming the process was flawed. But Matutu rubbished the accusations, and he also went on to describe how poorly media hangman Tafataona Mahoso performed during his interview.

It was one of the most embarrassing episodes I’ve witnessed in years,” said Matutu of Mahoso’s interview. “When asked a question he either failed to understand it, or he wanted to redefine the question in order to answer it the way he wanted,” the Masvingo urban MP said.

“It was quite surprising that a person of his calibre would not even want to define what civil society is, instead, deciding to go into the history of the Svosve people.”

“It was a very clear indication of a person who clearly failed to answer the questions, a person who was arrogant and quite dismissive of the panel. I believe he didn’t even want to appear before the panel, and this is the simple reason why he failed,” Matutu explained.

Parliament’s Standing Rules and Orders Committee drew up a final list of 12 candidates, described by the Committee as ‘experts in the media, and highly professionals in the field.’

The finalists include lawyer cum-journalist Chris Mhike who topped the list, followed by Rino Zhuwarara, a media lecturer and former CEO of ZBC, and third was former Sunday News reporter and clergyman Reverend Useni Sibanda.

Former senior Chronicle reporter Miriam Madziwa made it to number four on the list, and fifth was Zimbabwe Union of Journalists President Matthew Takaona, who previously worked for many years at the Sunday Mail.

Publisher Roger Stringer is sixth on the list, and Wabata Munodawafa, a former Editor of the state-run ZIANA news agency came 7th, with former ZBC CEO Henry Muradzikwa taking the eighth slot.

Former Daily News Editor-in-Chief Nqobile Nyathi was ninth, followed by former radio 3 disc jockey Milicent Mombeshora, while Clemence Mabasa was 11th, and the last on the list is former radio-TV anchor person Godfrey Majonga.

Click here to read the full report, posted on SW Radio Africa's website.