SADC Condemns Abuse Of Its Brand Image By Zimbabwean State Media

11 months agoTue, 15 Aug 2023 10:05:36 GMT
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SADC Condemns Abuse Of Its Brand Image By Zimbabwean State Media

SADC has condemned the use of the SADC brand image in an article in Zimbabwe’s state-run daily publication “The Herald” that ran with quotes attributed to presidential spokesperson George Charamba.

The article, which had the headline: “Stray and we will deport you: Charamba warns election observers”, had a picture of an election observer dressed in SEOM regalia.

In a statement, the SADC Electoral Observation Mission to Zimbabwe (SEOM) said:

On 11 August 2023, in Gaborone, Botswana, the Southern African Development Community (SADC) Secretariat noted with great concern a story captioned “Stray and we will deport you: Charamba warns election observers” which attributed to the Herald Newspaper of Zimbabwe, and which appeared on the online “newsdzezimbabwe”
website on 9 August 2023.

The story is accompanied by a photographic image of an individual dressed in the SADC Election Observation Mission (SEOM) regalia.

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The article alleges ulterior motives and pro-opposition agenda by foreign election observers reported to have deployed to Zimbabwe for the forthcoming elections scheduled for 23 August 2023.

The story also mentions specific institutions and observers who are said to have deployed to Zimbabwe to discredit the country’s elections.

None of the institutions or individuals named are linked with SADC or SADC’s official election observation mission (the SEOM).

The use of the image of an individual wearing the SADC election observation regalia in the story, unfortunately, associates SADC with the observers who the story alleges “are audaciously interfering in the country’s electoral processes”.

The use of the SADC branded image to accompany this story places SADC in a negative context and has the unfortunate potential of putting personnel in the service of SADC at risk.

The image on the article, as well as the headline of the story, have since been changed. The headline has been altered to “Poll observers told to stick to mandate”.

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