The Media Institute of Southern Africa (MISA) Zimbabwe has launched an alert button, a mobile application to ensure the safety of journalists ahead of the Saturday by-elections
Speaking during a meeting held in Bulawayo, MISA- Zimbabwe Legal ICT Policy Officer Nompilo Simanje said media practitioners are part of the frontline workers during the election period.
“We are engaging media practitioners with regards to media and elections, we have been speaking broadly about the role of media practitioners during this time and how they are front line workers as far as promoting access to election-related information is concerned,” said Simanje.
She said they were also prioritizing the digital safety of media practitioners.
“In that regard also, we prioritise the issue of safety and security of media practitioners so that was the core objective of our engagement to remind each other if the critical issues around the physical security of media practitioners but also cognizant of the digital safety and security, we realize that media practitioners always collect or always have in custody critical information that is part of their news, part of dissemination but also information that they get from their sources hence the issue of confidentiality is very important about the protection of their devices and the protection of their documents,” she said.
“We engaged at length today about the MISA alert button app which was launched yesterday for the purpose of ensuring that whenever media practitioners especially in this season feel that they are in threat or in the midst of any potential threat to their physical security they will use that application to communicate with their emergency contacts.”
Simanje added, “But also we are engaging media practitioners on the tools and platforms that they can use that are secure for communication but that are also secure for storage of documents and dissemination of information, so we hope that going forward the practitioners will be safe not only physically but also in terms of the nature of the information that they carry with them.”
You can download the application here: https://tinyurl.com/misabutton