Germain Lendoye

Beats Covered:
Local or Foreign:

Lendoye, a reporter for the satirical weekly La Cigale Enchantée, was arrested by police for nonpayment of a fine for libel and condemned to two months behind bars. A Libreville magistrate imposed the fine of 20,000 CFA francs (US$308) on December 9, after Zacharie Myboto, Gabon’s public-works minister and mayor of the rural town of Mounana, lodged a complaint against the journalist and his publication. The minister claimed he had been libeled by Lendoye in a La Cigale Enchantée article of March 9 that accused him of unfair distribution of real-estate permits for the town of Mounana. Entitled “The Untouchable Duke of Mounana,” Lendoye’s article had serious repercussions for the satirical weekly, which at year’s end had been unable to publish an issue since early October. The newspaper’s publication director, Dorothée Ngouoni, left the country for fear of reprisals. She had been charged with defamation in connection with Lendoye’s article and, like Lendoye, sentenced to a two-month prison term and a US$308 fine.