10 November 2011

Alert

Edition of newspaper seized by police


Incident details

Seizure

Global Times, Newspaper

This is available in:

English Français
(MFWA/IFEX) - Police authorities in northern Sierra Leone on October 30, 2011 blocked the sale and distribution of the October 26, 2011 edition of privately-owned-Monrovia-based "the Global Times", after confiscating several copies of the newspaper for allegedly breaching the peace of the Koinadugu District.

Readers in the interior parts of Sierra Leone receive newspapers two or three days late due to transportation difficulties.

The Media Foundation for West Africa's (MFWA) correspondent reported that the seizure was ordered by Superintendent Biango, the Local Unit Police Commander of Kabala, a town in the district.

The correspondent said the seized edition of the newspaper included an article critical of Alhaji Allie Batorma Sheriff, a former chairman of the main opposition Sierra Leonean People's Party (SLPP) who has now defected to the ruling All People's Congress (APC).

The "offending" article was headlined, "Is Batorma Sheriff an ungrateful Man?", criticizing Batorma Sheriff for his defection.

According to Superintendent Biango, he took the decision in order to forestall the threats to peace in the district from where Batorma Sheriff hails.

Meanwhile, the management of the newspaper has expressed their readiness to institute legal action against the police.

In a statement, the Sierra Leone Association of Journalists (SLAJ) condemned the police saying "we are gravely disturbed by reports of an attack on press freedom by no less a person than Superintendent Biango"

MFWA adds its voice to the widespread condemnation of police censorship.

Source:

Putting free expression issues in perspective.

Sign up to receive IFEX In Context.

Sierra Leone
 
More from Sierra Leone
  • Freedom of the Press 2016: Sierra Leone

    In December, the editor of the Independent Observer was arrested and charged with publishing false information. The paper had incurred multiple sanctions from the IMC over the preceding year.

  • Freedom of the Press 2015: Sierra Leone

    Ranked 103 in annual global media freedom report

  • Freedom in the World 2014: Sierra Leone

    Police open fire on residents protesting development of palm oil plantation


At this point, would publish: "Home page"
 
IFEX is a global network of committed organisations working to defend and promote free expression.
Permission is granted for material on this website to be reproduced or republished in whole or in part provided the source member and/or IFEX is cited with a link to the original item.