Nssa Boss Writes To Police Commissioner Over “Cyber Bullying”
1 June 2023
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By A Correspondent| The National Social Security Authority (NSSA) general manager Arthur Manase has reported online publication News Hawks senior journalists to the police for cyber bullying.

Manase says News Hawks has soiled his image with false information and in the process dragging President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s name into unverified reports.

He says two news articles under the headlines “Mnangagwa in spotlight over the massive Nssa corruption” and “Suspended Nssa boss mired in US$353 000 luxury cars scandal” which were published by News Hawks and written by Gagare and Mpofu were defamatory and acts of Cyber bullying, alleging he was on suspension on corruption related allegations yet no such thing exists.

In a letter to Police Commissioner General Godwin Matanga, Manase through his lawyer Admire Rubaya, is seeking the two to be investigated for violating the Data Protection Act by publishing falsehoods. “It is our client’s view that the statement that the newspaper article which The News Hawks Newspaper published is false and defamatory. . .

“If the Newspaper had done its investigation well, it would have discovered that:Our client has never been suspended from NSSA, no corruption charges have never been preferred against our client.”

Our client has never received benefits beyond what is provided in his employment contract in his capacity as the General Manager including the vehicle loan which was properly signed for by then Board Chairman – Mr Clifford Matorera and the Honourable Minister Professor Paul Mavima, the current Minister of Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare,” the letter reads.

Manase believes the News Hawks is being used to whip public emotions and ask the police to investigate how they got hold of an un released report which is still in the president’s office.

“The intentional nature of their conduct stems from the fact that the reported articles are purportedly based on a draft forensic report which is currently with the Office of the President and Cabinet of Zimbabwe (hereinafter “the OPC”), which report has not yet been made public.

“In fact, it is our client’s assertion that the News Hawks Newspaper and its correspondents need to be taken to account for how they are in possession of a report which is currently privy to OPC alone.

“The allegations are not only unfounded and malicious, but they are also meant to pre-empt the release of the report, shape public opinion against our client, harass and psychologically bully him and destroy any prospect for his employment and economic wellbein,” the letter reads.

It is Manase’s argument that the News Hawks is being used by another faction within Nssa, being two directors who are currently on bail for criminal offences.

He avers that the News Hawks is pushing the agenda of the two and dragging the president’s name in a bid to force him to act and also soiling the public service minister’s name in the process.

“It is within the public domain that Newshawks has aligned with a faction in NSSA fronted by two Directors, said to be personal friends of the Editor who are currently on bail on fraud charges.

“Our client’s continued stay at NSSA has been construed as militating against the interests of these two and the NewsHawks Newspapers is being used as part of their strategy to destroy our client and the Honourable Minister Professor Mavima who is also seen as a stumbling block to their agenda.

“The name of his Excellency the President is being abused and smuggled into the articles by Newshawks as a way of pressuring him to Act according to their agenda,” the letter reads.

In his report to the police, Manase calls for an investigation into the conduct of the two journalists.

“. . . we urge you to consider Section 164B, 164C of the Criminal Law Codification and Reform Act [Chapter 9:23] as amended by the Cyber and Data Protection Act [Chapter 12:07] to investigate The News Hawks Newspaper, and in particular, its two correspondents namely Owen Gagare and Bernard Mpofu, whom we assert have committed offences relating to Cyberbullying, harassment and transmission of false data messages intending to cause harm,” the letter reads.