Kinshasa editor released on bail


September 25, 2006
Original Alert: September 20, 2006

Feu d’Or Bosange, Tapis Rouge

Bosange, editor of the private, Kinshasa-based newspaper, was released on bail after nearly two weeks in detention, according to local press freedom group Journaliste en Danger (JED). He was jailed over an article alleging corruption by a top tax official. Two days before his release, he had retracted his story and apologized in his paper Tapis Rouge (Red Carpet). He was released after submitting a letter of apology to the tax official.

In an interview with CPJ, Bosange stated that he had not been charged but was required to report to a magistrate twice a week.

Bosange was arrested September 12 in connection with an August 16 article headlined “Scandal at the DGI,” a copy of which CPJ obtained. The article alleged that the director of the General Directorate of Taxation, Sam Bokolombe, had embezzled public funds. In an interview with CPJ, Bokolombe said the accusations were untrue. He noted that police summoned him for questioning following the article’s publication.

This was not the first time that Bosange has been jailed for his work. In December 2004, he was held for six days over a December 16 article accusing national tax office directors of corruption. Journalists in the Democratic Republic of Congo face a constant threat of imprisonment under the country’s archaic defamation laws.