A former state media journalist has claimed that it is an unpardonable crime and a ‘risk’ to avoid putting Zimbabwe President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s picture on the first page of The Herald.

Reacting to Thursday’s print edition of the state propaganda mounthpiece Herald newspaper which had two different pictures of Mnangagwa on the first page, the paper’s dismissed former Acting Editor and Political Editor, Tichaona Zindoga said the editorial team decided not to leave anything to chance.

“It’s called leaving nothing to chance! That is, not risking putting a picture of (Mnangagwa) on Page 2 of (The Herald) even if there is another,” he said.

Zindoga was controversially ejected from The Herald after being accused of having held a secret meeting with fugitive G40 members in South Africa, including Saviour Kasukuwere.

The mutilated G40 was an intraparty faction which was fighting against Mnangagwa’s succession interests during the twilight stages of deposed dictator Robert Mugabe’s reign.

Prior to his dismissal, Zindoga reportedly had clashes with First Lady Auxillia Mnangagwa over his placement of pictures pitting the president’s wife on the inside pages of the state-run publication.

After his unceremonious exit from Zimpapers, Zindoga who also penned a poetry anthology titled ‘Death of the Commissar’, went on to establish an online publication called The Review and Mail.

The publication has been viciously critical of the Mnangagwa regime.