Censorship board bans constitution-making documentary

THE Government Censorship Board has banned a documentary chronicling the constitutional-making process in Zimbabwe, alleging it was unfit for viewership in the country, NewsDay has learnt.



The ban follows an application by Upfront Films to distribute the documentary, which features MDC-T secretary-general Douglas Mwonzora and Zanu PF’s Munyaradzi Paul Mangwana, who were involved in the constitution-making process.

However, the censorship board said permission to distribute the documentary should not be granted.

“Reference is made to your letter dated January 28, 2016, concerning the above-mentioned subject,” read the letter referenced “Application for distribution permit: Democrats.”

The board’s acting secretary Isaac Chiranganyika in a letter dated March 10 added: “The board of censors, after reviewing the DVD Democrats, recommended that the DVD remains banned and prohibited in Zimbabwe because it is not suitable for public showing as previously recommended.”

The letter was copied to Home Affairs permanent secretary Melusi Matshiya and Police Commissioner-General Augustine Chihuri.

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Mwonzora yesterday accused government of being oppressive by banning the documentary.

“I am aware that they banned Democrats, which is the documentary on the constitution-making process. The documentary has won over 15 international awards and it’s ironic that it is banned in Zimbabwe,” he said.

“It contains the truth and the people of Zimbabwe are eager to see the documentary. I hope the Constitutional Court will intervene positively. The ban is not justified. It is oppressive to ban it because they (government) don’t want the truth in that documentary to be shown,” Mwonzora said, insinuating he would mount a legal challenge against the ban.

However, his counterpart, Mangwana, welcomed the ban, saying some parts of the documentary depicted President Robert Mugabe as a dictator.

“It is a documentary of what was transpiring and the editors chose what part to put in it and it is up to the board to decide. I know there are excerpts which depict the President as a dictator and it could be those offensive excerpts that made it banned,” he said.

“I also made a point to the editors concerning that. The whole project was 480 hours of filming and they chose to use 45 minutes. The storyline shows the President as a dictator and I was offended by that, but I was not in charge of the editorial.”


  1. mgobhozi wezintabeni

    Legal action should be taken against the banning of the documentary.How can a documentary that had won international accolades be banned in the country of its origin?This confirms that Zimbabwe remains a pariah state and that’s why some leaders would remain in the personal sanctions list imposed by the US and the West for some time to come.

  2. These are the last kicks of a dying horse. Even if the documentary is banned a thousand, it is unstoppable becoz its already in the public domain. Mangwana, is worried about onslaughts from his colleagues after a number of careless utterances which stand as evidence against him.

  3. Well pointless. It there for free already. Go BBC archives and enjoy. Lol
    Anyway thats Dictatorship they are trying to defend.
    Makava evanhu.

    1. Please can someone paste the link?

  4. It’s been available on Netflix for months already

  5. we will make copies and distribute freely IN ZIMBABWE. With technology these days, you cant win makava ezanu. We will be giving people in Musina, Francistown, Livingstone, Ngundu, Nyamapanda, Plumtree, Bulawayo pachena.

  6. i watched it on dstv channel 190 last year and i enjoyed it a lot.

    Zimbabwe zvichanaka chete , sekunakira kwazvakaita kuvana ve Israel vaishungurudzwa na pharaoh

  7. It was once aired on BBC Mr Mwonzora we need politics of dissent upload it on YouTube or diasporans must send us the documentary.We must be enlightened on what was happening behind the scenes.

  8. I watched on youtube last year it seems to have been removed. If anyone has a copy please repost it o youtube, its good decumentary

  9. I finally found it . Its on youtube search using The democrats Zimabwe.

  10. That documentary shows the army generals were in charge of ZanuPF in the Costitution making process.Mangwana conceded that he met the generals to pacify them because they had planned to eliminate him for selling out to Mwonzora.

  11. Some of us did not know anything about this documentary. Now i will look for it on the internet. Thanks a lot to the censorship board for the publicity.

  12. I e­­­arn 20 do­­­llars e­­­very 25 mi­­­nut­­­es. Wo­­­rk f­­­or fe­­­w ho­­­urs a­­­nd ha­­­ve l­­­ong­­­er ti­­­me wi­­­th fr­­­iend­­­s an­­­d f­­­ami­­­ly. ­­­ch­­­eck it o­­­ut th­­­is li­­­nk fo­­­r de­­­tails.­­­….

    =====> W­W­W.w­o­r­k­­p­r­o­s­­p­e­c­t­­s.C­­O­­M

  13. its on youtube as we speak

  14. Pathetic! This government is despicably paranoid. Mangwana’s comments are laughable. If Mugabe is depicted as a dictator, doesn’t Mangwana have confidence in us Zimbabweans to make make up our own minds? We have been ruled by Mugabe for 36 years so we know what he is.

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