Journalist attacked at Khorixas

KHORIXAS: A freelance journalist of the Namibian Newspaper Clemans Miyanicwe who is based in Khorixas was assaulted at the town on Saturday.

The incident happened in the early hours of Saturday morning at around 02:00 am near an entertainment place after Miyanicwe was returning from a polling station where he had covered the 2014 Presidential and National Assembly elections.

Recalling his ordeal, Miyanicwe said the person who attacked him first said: ‘ You have written bad about my father,’ before hitting him with a bottle in his face.

He (Miyanicwe) then ran to the local police station from where he was rushed by a police officer to the Khorixas State hospital where he received ten stitches on his face particularly, between the eyes, on the nose and on his cheeks.

He explained that the assault might be linked to the national elections as the print media and the Namibian Broadcasting Corporation (NBC) were recently verbally attacked at a rally held by the United Democratic Front (UDF) for the 2014 Presidential and National Assembly Elections where that party accused them (print media and NBC) of reporting lies.

‘This particular party did not specify which media house had written and reported lies and this can lead to attacks on journalist, because you are not specifying who is writing and reporting lies. And the UDF supporters have also chased me in the past to attack me,’ he said.

Miyanicwe also informed this reporter that the assault might also be linked to cases of corruption in the town of Khorixas that he reported on last year through the Namibian Newspaper after which was detained for six hours in the police holding cells and was only released when the lawyers of The Namibian Newspaper intervened.

He added that after these corruption reports he started receiving death threats, a situation which forced him to move out of Khorixas and seek refuge in the towns of Windhoek and Kamanjab between last year February and this year (2014) in May, when he returned to Khorixas.

Noted that journalist: ‘When I returned to Khorixas in May this year, I did not write any corruption stories and was just writing election stories and i have been fearing for my life ever since and i left my place to stay with my aunt because i fear for my safety. No matter what they plan to do, I will keep on writing, only death will stop me.

Miyanicwe was also a freelance journalist for the Informante Newspaper based in Khorixas in 2011 before he moved over to The Namibian Newspaper also as a freelance journalist in 2012.

A journalist from NBC Blanch Goreses was recently also verbally attacked by members of the United Democratic Front (UDF) political party which accused her for not covering and filming the arrival of UDF’s President as his was making his into the stadium at Khorixas where their rally was held.

Meanwhile, the National Director for the Media Institute of Southern Africa (MISA) Namibia, Natasha Tibinyane condemn the assault saying that it is unacceptable for ordinary citizens to assault journalist because journalist are there to inform and educate the nation so that the citizens can make informed choices.

She however reminded the public to air their grievances with the Office of the Media Ombudsman if they (public) are unhappy with articles reported by the media.