Matthias Manirakiza

Beats Covered:
Local or Foreign:

Manirakiza, director of Radio Isanganiro, was held in the central prison in the capital, Bujumbura, in connection with a story broadcast in August. The report cited police sources as saying authorities planned to stage fake attacks on the homes of top officials to bolster their claims of a coup plot.

Several top opposition leaders, including the former president, were on trial in late year for alleged participation in the plot. Reports on Radio Isanganiro and other independent radio stations cast doubt on whether a plot truly existed.

Agence France-Presse quoted Manirakiza’s lawyer, Raphael Gahungu as saying that his client was jailed for allegedly “authorizing the broadcast of information threatening to state and public security.” It was not immediately clear whether any formal charges were filed.

Radio Isanganiro is backed by the U.S.-based nongovernmental organization Search for Common Ground.