Zimbabwe throws out Telegraph cricket writer - Press Gazette

Zimbabwe throws out Telegraph cricket writer

Bose: passport was confiscated

Zimbabwe appears to remain a no-go area for British journalists following the deportation of a Daily Telegraph sports writer.

Mihir Bose was deported on Tuesday, apparently for no other reason than the fact that he held a British passport and was a journalist.

The move casts further doubt on England’s controversial cricket tour of Zimbabwe planned later this year.

Bose was the only British journalist to travel to Zimbabwe to report on Tuesday’s one-day cricket international between Zimbabwe and Sri Lanka. He arrived in the country on Monday afternoon, paid $55 for a visa and told officials he was a British journalist visiting the country to report on the cricket.

That evening he was visited in his hotel by an immigration official who confiscated his passport and told him he was to be deported for not having the correct Zimbabwe Cricket Union accreditation.

Bose left the following day on the next available flight to Johannesburg.

He said it was not unusual for journalists to arrange accreditation with sporting bodies at the last minute and thought this was used as an excuse.

“There were lots of other journalists arriving in Bulawayo and many of them did not have accreditation.

“I’m British and I’m a journalist and that’s considered a deadly combination by the Mugabe regime.

“British journalists are seen as dangerous subversives. It raises the question of how can a British cricket team go to Zimbabwe? You can’t have a British tour without any British journalists covering it.”

Robert Mugabe’s regime has clamped down on its native press and closed down the Daily News which was considered to be the country’s last independent newspaper.

In May last year, The Guardian’s Zimbabwe correspondent, Andrew Meldrum, was expelled after 23 years of reporting from the country.

By Dominic Ponsford