TV producer reinstated



September 21

Original Alert: September 12, 2006

Dodou Sanneh, Gambia Radio and Television Services

Sanneh, a senior TV producer, told CPJ he had resumed employment with GRTS on September 21 after receiving a letter of reinstatement. He said he no longer had to report to the National Intelligence Agency, and that the NIA had returned his confiscated reports.

Sanneh was jailed for almost a week and fired from his job, after covering an opposition candidate running in the September 22 presidential election. He was released without charge but had been ordered to report daily to the authorities.

Sanneh’s employment contract was apparently terminated the same day he was detained by the NIA and interrogated about his coverage of opposition candidate Ousainou Darboe, according to a source who asked not to be identified for fear of retribution from authorities. No explanation was given for the termination. The source said that the NIA had confiscated all Sanneh’s reports on Darboe, one of two candidates running against President Yahya Jammeh.

Sources in Gambia, a highly repressive country, are reluctant to speak on the record out of fear of reprisal. Since March, the government has shut a leading independent newspaper, detained at least 10 journalists, and brought a reporter to trial under a repressive new law.