The political role of the diaspora media in the mediation of the Zimbabwean crisis : a case study of The Zimbabwean - 2008 to 2010

Matsilele, Trust (2013-12)

Thesis (MPhil)--Stellenbosch University, 2013.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: After a decade long multi-faceted political crisis, political parties in Zimbabwe signed the Global Political Agreement (GPA) of 2008 following the Southern African Development Community’s (SADC) mediated talks culminating in the formation of an inclusive government. This study sought to investigate the political role, if any, played by the diasporic media in mediating the Zimbabwean crisis. This research focused on diasporic media using as a case study The Zimbabwean newspaper considering that during the research period it was circulating both in the country and diaspora communities in Western Europe, the USA and SADC countries. Diasporic media in Zimbabwe is a phenomenon associated with the rise of robust political opposition to the former ruling ZANU PF regime. Accordingly, such media operated outside the purview of the contemporary legislative and legal regime although the newspaper circulated in Zimbabwe. A number of anti establishment news media sprouted to challenge and offer resistance in the cyberspace and on shortwave and in print media. The Social Responsibility Theory was employed with the aim of establishing whether or not The Zimbabwean observed the journalistic ethics of reporting with truthfulness, accuracy, balance and objectivity. The Social Responsibility Theory’s thrust is on de-sensationalising reportage, promotion of media ethics and self regulation. This study employed both qualitative and quantitative research methods. The research established that The Zimbabwean newspaper played, to a larger extent, an active role in challenging the ZANU PF-led government and gave a platform to the oppositional Movement for Democratic Change. The conclusion arrived at in this study was that just like the state media, which promoted the government’s propaganda, The Zimbabwean did the same for the opposition parties in Zimbabwe.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Politieke partye in Zimbabwe het ná ’n lang politieke krisis met vele fasette die Global Political Agreement (GPA) van 2008 geteken. Dit het gevolg op die Suid-Afrikaanse Ontwikkelingsgemeenskap (SAOG) se mediëring wat gelei het tot die vorm van ’n inklusiewe regering. Hierdie studie het probeer om die politieke rol, indien enigsins, van die diaspora-media in die mediëring van die Zimbabwiese krisis te ondersoek. Die navorsing het op diaspora-media gefokus deur ’n gevallestudie van die koerant The Zimbabwean te doen. Dié blad is gedurende die navorsingstyd in die land sowel as onder die Zimbabwiese diaspora in Europa, die VSA en SAOG-lande versprei. Diaspora-media in Zimbabwe is ’n fenomeen wat geassosieer word met die opkoms van ’n robuuste politieke opposisie teen die ZANU (PF)-regime. Dié media opereer dus buite die grense van die juridiese en wetgewende gesag van die land. ’n Verskeidenheid antiestablishment media het in die kuberruim, kortgolfradio en drukmedia ontwikkel wat beide uitgedaag en weerstand gebied het. Die Sosiale Verantwoordelikheidsteorie is gebruik om vas te stel of The Zimbabwean joernalistieke etiek nagekom het deur waarheidsgetrou en akkuraat, sowel as met balans en objektiwiteit, te rapporteer. Die teorie fokus om reportage te desensasionaliseer en om media-etiek en selfregulering te bevorder. Die studie het kwalitatiewe en kwantitatiewe navorsingsmetodes gebruik. Die navorsing het vasgestel dat The Zimbabwean tot ’n groot mate ’n aktiewe rol gespeel het om die ZANU (PF)-regering uit te daag en ’n platform te bied aan die Movement for Democratic Change (MDC)-groepering. Die slotsom is dat, net soos die staatsmedia regering-propaganda bevorder het, The Zimbabwean dit vir die opposisiepartye in Zimbabwe gedoen het.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/85723
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