A bill presented to the Zimbabwean parliament at the end of March will give the government a free hand to intercept its citizens’ phone calls, e-mail messages and letters without providing any credible safeguards, Reporters Without Borders said today after obtaining a copy of the bill, the text of which is now available on the organisation’s site (www.rsf.org).
“We fear the worst,” Reporters Without Borders said. “This bill will allow the authorities to place journalists and opposition politicians under surveillance without any control from the courts. It also directly threatens the local contacts of international media and NGOs. The government will have new tools to ensure that no embarrassing news or information crosses its borders.”