Sydney Saize on trial

Sydney Saize was arrested in the Zimbabwean town of Mutare in January 2006. He is charged under the Access to Information and Protection of Privacy Act for reporting at a school where two teachers were assaulted by pro-government supporters,

According to the police, Saize violated Chapter 10.27 of the draconian Access to Information and Protection of Privacy Act (AIPPA), in that he enjoyed the privilege of an accredited journalist by gathering news from Gomorefu Secondary School in Marange for transmission on Studio 7, which falls under the Voice of America. Saize is alleged to have a covered a story in which two teachers at the school were assaulted by Zanu PF youths and war veterans. The teachers were accused of being supporters or sympathizers of the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC). link

According to The Association of Zimbabwean Journalists, “About 100 journalists have been arrested and arraigned before the courts since the law was enacted after the disputed 2002 presidential elections.” If Sydney is convicted he could face between two to 20 years in prison. Wilbert Mandinde, from the Media Institute of Southern Africa, is the lawyer representing him in the case.