‘They wanted me to say I was wrong’: Freed Ethiopian journalist on why 1,500 days in jail failed to silence her
Reeyot Alemu, an Ethiopian journalist who worked for the independent weekly Feteh, spent almost 1,500 days in prison after being arrested in June 2011 and charged with terrorism in 2012. She was released unexpectedly in July.
Mission Journal: Will Obama’s visit boost hopes for press freedom in Kenya?
President Barack Obama is expected to address a range of topics when he arrives in Kenya tomorrow. The Kenyan government says it plans to discuss security and trade, while opposition parties and civil society want good governance and human rights added to the agenda, according to news reports. We hope the discussion includes the commitments…
South African police repeatedly force journalists to delete photos
South Africa is synonymous with crime in the eyes of many–as evidenced by the recent mugging of a TV crew live on camera–but for the press, a more sinister threat to freedom lies in the growing number of cases where it is the police, in flagrant denial of their orders, who intimidate and threaten journalists,…
Mission Journal: In Zambia, Sata never fulfilled promise of greater transparency
“We’ll see for ourselves on Friday,” was a refrain on the lips of most journalists I met in Lusaka in mid-September, as they speculated on the health of President Michael Sata ahead of their country’s opening of parliament, where the leader was due to speak.
South Africa’s new communications ministry causes concern
Freedom of expression advocates in South Africa are concerned that the new Ministry of Communications, announced by President Jacob Zuma when he unveiled his cabinet on May 25, will compromise the independence of the public broadcaster and serve as a propaganda office.
SABC betrays South Africa’s young democracy
This week, South Africans go to the polls for their fifth democratic elections since 1994, but despite constitutional guarantees of media freedom, the vast majority of South Africans who vote will do so informed only by the positive news and information carried by a public broadcaster widely criticized for its partiality to the ruling party.
Africa’s journalists honor jailed editor Woubshet Taye
Journalists and media owners across Africa gave Ethiopian journalist Woubshet Taye a standing ovation in Cape Town on Saturday night at the CNN MultiChoice African Journalist Awards 2013, but he wasn’t there to see it. Instead his wife and son accepted the Free Press Award on his behalf. Part of the citation for the award…
SABC keeps lid on ‘Project Spear’ documentary
The South African Broadcasting Corporation is in the news for not airing a politically sensitive documentary that details allegations of apartheid-era theft of public funds. The public broadcaster, which had commissioned the film, has also refused to sell the rights back to the filmmaker and has filed a lawsuit demanding she turn over her raw…
Q&A: Zenzele Ndebele promotes radio in Zimbabwe
With Zimbabwe elections days away, the fight over access to the airwaves has intensified. The media environment has loosened slightly compared with previous years, but most Zimbabweans still lack access to independent sources of news, including radio. One person familiar with obstacles to broadcasting is Zenzele Ndebele, editor of Radio Dialogue, a community radio station…