Hopes high Senegal would cease abuse of media


Senegalese President Bassirou Diomaye Faye

from AMADOU NDIAYE in Dakar, Senegal
DAKAR, (CAJ News) – MORE than 60 journalists have been arrested, attacked or detained during the past three years of political crisis in Senegal.

Reporters Without Borders (RSF), which documented the violations, believes the coming to power of new authorities is an opportunity for the media to heal and for the country to again become a driving force in the defense of the right to information throughout the region.

RSF reports that since March 2021, dozens of journalists had been abused, the polarization of the media has increased, social networks interrupted and media licenses suspended in the West African nation.

This coincided with uncertainty if then president, Macky Sall, would seek a third, unconstitutional term.

He dropped the plans and Bassirou Diomaye Faye was elected in March this year.

“After three years of free fall, it is high time for Senegal to move forward in terms of press freedom,” said Sadibou Marong, Director of RSF’s Sub-Saharan Africa desk.

The official believes the arrival of Faye, who had promised in particular to abolish prison sentences for press offenses and to protect the work of journalists, was an opportunity to carry out fundamental reforms to guarantee the right to information.

RSF earlier in June presented its report, “Senegalese Journalism at the Crossroads”, to the Minister of Communication, Telecommunications and Digital Affairs, Alioune Sall.

The minister said they would be “attentive to carry out the necessary projects.”

A few days before June 3 when the report was presented, two newspaper publishing directors had been summoned and interviewed for several hours by the gendarmerie for articles on a senior army officer.

– CAJ News

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