• November 3, 2023

MRCG Intensifies Calls for Journalists’ Safety

MRCG Intensifies Calls for Journalists’ Safety
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By Alusine Fullah

The Media Reform Coordinating Group in Sierra Leone on a press release that was released on the 2nd November, 2023 has made strong calls for the safety of journalists. In commemorating the International Day to End Impunity for Crimes against Journalists, MRCG has called and urged all stakeholders to protect the rights of journalists and to a greater extent to end impunity against journalists. The press release states: “The United Nations General Assembly proclaimed 2 November as the International Day to End Impunity for Crimes against Journalists…the MRCG, therefore, continues to call on the Government, politicians, media organizations, media owners and managers, civil society organizations and members of the public to ensure the safety and security of journalists across the country at all times…”

MRCG went further to state that since 2018, the institution (MRCG) has been monitoring and publishing reports on media freedom detailing cases of invitations, intimidations, attacks, assaults, arrests, detentions and prosecution of journalists. In line with the foregoing, MRCG highlighted cases of attacks against journalists. It highlighted:

“…the MRCG reminds the Government of Sierra Leone that in March this year, it monitored the attack and assault of the Station Manager of Fountain of Peace Radio (FOP) in Moyamba District, Southern Sierra Leone, Alie Tokowa, at the ruling Sierra Leone People’s Party (SLPP) office in the district allegedly by its supporters on the instruction of the outgoing District Council Chairman of the party. MRCG also monitored the attack on the BBC Correspondent in Sierra Leone, Umaru Fofana, by supporters of the All People’s Congress (APC) party during the party’s press conference at the New Brookfields Hotel in Freetown…the online death threats against journalist Musa S. Kamara working for Radio Democracy 98.1 FM…”

The Media Reform Coordinating Group ended by reminding all media owners and managers that the concerns, welfare and safety of journalists are addressed at all times. In many cases, the MRCG stated that one of its reports has shown that majority of the media houses lacked a safety and security policy.

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