Municipal Elections: Mzansi Unhappy with the Arrest of a Journalist at Voting Station in Soweto

Municipal Elections: Mzansi Unhappy with the Arrest of a Journalist at Voting Station in Soweto

  • The arrest of a Newzroom Afrika journalist on Election day at a voting station in Soweto has raised some concerns for South Africans
  • Ziniko Mhlaba and a cameraman were apprehended by the South African Police Services for standing in the way of the IEC doing its work
  • Both media practitioners were later realised after intervention from the Gauteng provincial government and Newszroom Afrika

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JOHANNESBURG - South Africans are not too happy about the arrest of a journalist who was broadcasting from a polling station in Soweto, Johannesburg on Monday.

Taking to social media, Newzroom Afrika notified South Africans that journalist Ziniko Mhlaba had been apprehended for allegedly interfering with the processes of the Independent Electoral Commission.

Journalist arrest, Newzroom Afrika, voting station, police, IEC, live broadcast, Soweto
A journalist was dramatically arrested at a voting station in Soweto. Image: Newzroom Afrika/Screenshot
Source: Twitter

News24 reports that Mhlaba was blocked by a police officer who stood between him and the cameraman, blocking him from reporting from the voting station. Both Mhlaba and the cameraman were removed from the polling site.

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Newzroom Afrika later reported that Mhlaba and the cameraman were released from custody after intervention from the media house and the Gauteng provincial government.

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Here's a video of the arrest:

South Africans angered by the arrest of Newszroom Afrika journalist

Newzroom Afrika reached the top of the trending list following the arrest of Mhlaba and his cameraman. Many found his arrest worrying and called for explanations. Here's what they had to say:

@Vuyani_Mat said:

If a journalist can be treated like this in full view of the cameras, what happens to an ordinary citizen in the absence of such. #Newzroom405

@SikeeDlanga said:

"I hope this #Newzroom405 incident helped other voters to decide who they want to be in power because this isn't it."

@jnrthusa10 said:

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"The State is losing millions through unlawful arrest claims. Police need better education"

@Prince_Luyd said

"@ZinikoMhlaba@SAPoliceService the Orlando East Station Commander with her colleagues who violated, assaulted and wrongful arrested Ziniko Mhlaba must be fired with immediate effect. There's no excuse for violence, ill-behaviour from members of the SAPSheads must roll #Newzroom405"

@BoyJacobs2 said:

"I really can't understand why would somebody arrest journalist... Like wtf"

@kul_marcus said:

"For elections to be free,fair & credible,the electorate must have access to information AT ALL STAGES of the electoral process..." The journalist was simply doing his job!"

“What a joke”: South Africans unimpressed with voting station glitches

Briefly News previously reported that The Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) of South Africa has reported various problems at polling stations across the country.

These glitches include ballot paper shortages, lack of indelible ink, and some voting stations not opening at 7 am, as specified by the IEC.

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There have also been complaints of COVID-19 protocols not being adhered to by both voters and election officials alike, reports News24.

Source: Briefly News

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