The Herald is a
government owned daily newspaper published in Harare, the capital
The newspaper's origins date back to the 19th century. Its
forerunner was launched on June 27 1891 by W E Fairbridge for the
Argus group of South Africa. Named the “Mashonaland
Herald and Zambesian Times”, it was
a weekly, hand-written news sheet produced using the cyclostyle
duplicating process. In
October the following year it became a printed newspaper and
changed its name to "The Rhodesia Herald”.
group later set up a subsidiary called the Rhodesian Printing and
Publishing Company to run its newspapers in what was then Southern
After the white minority Rhodesian Front government unilaterally
declared independence on 11 November 1965, it started censoring The
Rhodesia Herald. The newspaper responded by leaving blank spaces
where articles had been removed, enabling readers to gauge the
extent of the censorship.
Copy of The Rhodesia Herald, 1976
In 1981, after Zimbabwe became independent, the government bought
The Herald and other papers from the Argus group, using a US$20
million grant from Nigeria, and established the Zimbabwe Mass Media
Trust to operate them. The Trust created Zimbabwe Newspapers, Ltd.,
as the publisher of the papers.
newspapers published by the same group include The Sunday Mail in
Harare, The Chronicle and The Sunday News in Bulawayo and the
Manica Post in Mutare.
Chronicle, launched in October 1894 as The Bulawayo Chronicle, is
the second oldest newspaper in the country.
has for some time been noted for its completely
one sided reporting for the government of President Robert Mugabe
and the Zanu-PF
party, and its demonization of the
opposition party, the Movement for Democratic
(MDC). It often accuses the MDC of being agents of
faces limited competition from within Zimbabwe,
although there are still several independent newspapers based in
Zimbabwe, such as the
, due to very restrictive accreditation laws in
Zimbabwe. Many opposition media claim that the paper has evolved
into an instrument of rather crude and aggressive propaganda. (On
the other hand, it often offers important insights into the
workings of the Zanu-PF elite.)The editorial staff are open in
their partisanship. The paper makes no pretense of impartiality.
The editors also support the restrictions on opposition newspapers.
Their rationale for this is explained as follows by Caesar Zvayi
, a regular contributor to the
- "A free Press is vital for a vibrant society. But
you have to understand the context in which the Zimbabwean State is
operating. It is under siege from some Western countries,
some of which - like the US - openly admit to sponsoring the media
and various opposition groups to discredit the Government.
... How independent will the Press be if they are
funded by an outsider who openly declares his intention to unseat
the incumbent Government?"
Herald House, Harare
In mid-May 2008, its website
shut down by cyber hackers
The Herald's offices are in Herald House, overlooking Africa Unity
Square in central Harare.
As of May 2008, the editor of The Herald was Pikirayi