Tanzanian reporter finally freed after seven months

first_img Help by sharing this information “The authorities exacted a high price, because he had to pay an exorbitant sum to get out of a prison he should never have entered. The seven months in detention and the thousands of euros paid for his release are indicative of the enormous pressures on journalists in a country that has seen a constant decline in press freedom in recent years.” Reporters Without Borders (RSF) welcomes Tanzanian journalist Erick Kabendera’s release today after nearly seven months in prison but regrets that he had to plead guilty to charges of money-laundering and tax evasion to be freed. The high price exacted by the authorities is indicative of the steady decline in press freedom in Tanzania, RSF said. Le journaliste Erick Kabdendera est ressorti libre du tribunal de Kisutu en Tanzanie le 24 février 2020. Photo @JamiiForums Organisation A stringer for such renowned media outlets as The Guardian and The East African, Kabendera was arrested on 29 July 2019 on suspicion of having obtained his Tanzanian citizenship fraudulently. Thereafter, the charges against him kept on being changed in a series of hearings because the prosecution was unable to produce supporting evidence. February 4, 2021 Find out more TanzaniaAfrica Condemning abuses ImprisonedFreedom of expressionPredatorsEconomic pressureJudicial harassment Receive email alerts Twitter arbitrarily blocks South African newsweekly and several reporters over Covid vaccine story November 5, 2020 Find out more to go further November 27, 2020 Find out more February 24, 2020 Tanzanian reporter finally freed after seven months The 2020 pandemic has challenged press freedom in Africa Follow the news on Tanzania News RSF had repeatedly denounced the lack of evidence for the various charges being brought against Kabendera and the grave decline in the state of his health as a result of the months in prison. Everything was done to undermine him. Hearings were repeatedly postponed at the request of the prosecution, which said it needed more time to complete its investigations. Kabendera was not even allowed out of prison to attend his mother’s funeral in December. News Tanzanian media unable to cover Covid-19 epidemic News Reports TanzaniaAfrica Condemning abuses ImprisonedFreedom of expressionPredatorsEconomic pressureJudicial harassment After a charge of “organized economic crime” was finally dropped today, Kabendera obtained his release by paying the equivalent of 40,000 euros in taxes that he had allegedly failed to pay and a fine of 100 euros on the charges of tax evasion and money-laundering to which he pleaded guilty.  His lawyer told RSF that he will have to pay an additional 29,000 euros in allegedly unpaid taxes over the next six months. “We are extremely relieved by this investigative journalist’s release but we continue to maintain that he should never have been imprisoned,” said Arnaud Froger, the head of RSF’s Africa desk. RSF_en Since 2016, the year after John Magufuli became president, Tanzania has fallen 47 places in RSF’s World Press Freedom Index and is now ranked 118th out of 180 countries. Harassment and intimidation of journalists has increased, reporters are often arrested, some media outlets have been suspended and several laws have been adopted that restrict free speech and the freedom to inform. After Azory Gwanda, a reporter for Mwananchi, Tanzania’s leading Swahili-language newspaper, and its English-language edition, The Citizen, went missing in November 2017, the authorities provided no information about his disappearance and no serious investigation was ever conducted.last_img read more

Prior censorship and expulsion of foreign journalists deal “mortal blow” to press freedom

first_imgThe staff of the national television station also protested about the censorship on 12 April, whenFijians saw the following message on an otherwise black screen: “Viewers please be advised that there will be no 6 p.m. news tonight.” to go further Asia – Pacific Organisation News Help by sharing this information June 2, 2021 Find out more RSF_en Follow the news on Asia – Pacific According to the Public Emergency Regulations introduced under a 30-day state of emergency on 10 April, the permanent secretary for information now has complete control over what the news media report in Fiji, and officials have urged the media to report “positive” news. The measures have been widely condemned by regional press freedom groups such as the Pacific Media Centre, which has talked of an “Orwellian era of ruthless censorship and intimidation.”The authorities have also targeted the international media in the capital, Suva. Reporter Sia Aston and cameraman Matt Smith of New Zealand’s TV3 and Australian Broadcasting Corporation reporter Sean Dorney were forced to leave Fiji today. While not formally arrested, they were given no choice and were escorted to the airport. The police confiscated the material that Aston had filmed on censorship. He said the Fijian media were under “very strong pressure” from the government. Edwin Nand, a journalist with the Fijian TV station Fiji One, was detained at Suva police headquarters for interviewing an Australian journalist. “The military government is heading dangerously towards a Burmese-style system in which the media are permanently subject to prior censorship and other forms of obstruction,” Reporters Without Borders said. “We appeal to the international community, especially the European Union and United Nations, to respond to this manifest desire to restrict the free flow of news and information by speaking out and firmly condemning media censorship.” Reporters Without Borders appeals to President Ratu Josefa Iloilo and Prime Minister Frank Bainimarama, the head of Fiji’s military government, to repeal measures taken on 10 April that institutionalise media censorship and violate Fiji’s international undertakings to respect the rule of law. Greg Baxter, a spokesman for the company that owns the Fiji Times, News Ltd, said: “We are at this stage making the decision not to publish anything rather than publish something that has been censored.” The newspaper’s editor, Netani Rika, and its publisher were summoned by the information ministry on 12 April and reprimanded for being “uncooperative”. It stopped printing blank pages the next day but seemed to be boycotting all political news. Asia – Pacific Two Fiji Sun editors were summoned for questioning yesterday for publishing a front-page article announcing that the daily newspaper would refuse to cover politics in protest against the censorship. An online chat forum, Sotiacentral.com, decided to close rather than let its members be censored.center_img June 2, 2021 Find out more Mongolia : RSF urges presidential candidates to voice support for press freedom Pakistani TV anchor censored after denouncing violence against journalists Tuiloma Neroni Slade, the secretary-general of the Pacific Islands Forum, said: “The curtailment of media access and freedom of speech and the disregard for judicial independence are especially worrying.” Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd said Fiji had become a “military dictatorship.” New Zealand foreign minister Murray McCully said Fiji’s suspension from the Commonwealth and the Pacific Islands Forum was “inevitable”. According to the Public Emergency Regulations introduced under a 30-day state of emergency on 10 April, the secretary for information has complete control over what the news media report in Fiji. “The military government is heading dangerously towards a Burmese-style system in which the media are permanently subject to prior censorship and other forms of obstruction,” Reporters Without Borders said. June 7, 2021 Find out more Receive email alerts President Iloilo suspended the constitution on 10 April and announced a “new legal order”. The next day, he reappointed the head of the armed forces, Commodore Bainimarama, as prime minister, a position Bainimarama has held since a December 2006 military coup.Since then, soldiers and information ministry personnel have taken up positions inside the print and broadcast media. Officials say their job to prevent the publication or broadcasting of reports that could cause “disorder”, “disaffection” or “public alarm” The media have been told they must “cooperate” and must not criticise the new regime or carry stories that could regarded as “incitement”. News News China: Political commentator sentenced to eight months in prison April 14, 2009 – Updated on January 20, 2016 Prior censorship and expulsion of foreign journalists deal “mortal blow” to press freedom News The media have responded with protests. The Sunday edition of the Fiji Times was published on 12 April with pages that were completely blank except for this note: “The stories on this page could not be published due to government restrictions.”last_img read more

SMC students visit areas of campus featured in book of ghost stories

first_imgThirteen years after the publication of “Quiet Hours,” a collection of ghost stories taking place in various locations across Saint Mary’s campus, the Student Activities Board (SAB) held a tour Thursday for students to hear the book’s different stories in the buildings where they were reported to have occurred. SAB member Sinead Hickey said “Quiet Hours” was published in 2002 and written by Saint Mary’s alumnae Shelly Houser, Veronica Kessenich and Kristen Matha. While they were students, they interviewed hundreds of staff, faculty and local residents to put together a collection of stories of different sightings and happenings that transpired on campus. “All the stories are about occurrences which happened on our campus,” Hickey said. “This book is not only fun, but it also gives us a little insight into the history and identity of our school.”Hickey said the entertainment committee of SAB planned this tour as their main Halloween event.“This is a fun opportunity for students on campus because it is an option for a non-drinking Halloween event. You can have fun without a drink,” Hickey said. “It is a fun way to learn about the ghosts on campus and campus history. “Part of the Saint Mary’s identity is the ghosts present on campus.” The tour started in the south lounge of Regina Hall, Hickey said. Participating students received a map, which showed three of the dorms on campus — Regina Hall, Le Mans Hall and Holy Cross Hall — where members of SAB were stationed. Students then went to the three locations and SAB members read the corresponding stories in “Quiet Hours” that took place in each specific hall.In Regina Hall, students heard stories about pianos that played without anyone touching them, doors found inexplicably opened when they were originally locked and mysteriously rippling water in the pool that used to be in the building’s courtyard. Afterwards, students proceeded to Holy Cross Hall. This dorm was the first building of the College and was previously Saint Mary’s Academy. The book tells stories about a mysterious sighting of a young nun and a large dog in front of the building during a time when only a single, older nun wore a habit, and no nuns owned a dog. The book also notes occurrences of noises being heard in the bathrooms — especially those on the third floor — that sounded like people brushing their teeth or showering when no one was actually there.Sophomore Mackenzie Griffin, who participated in the tour, said she believes the stories.“I definitely think the ghosts stories on campus are real,” Griffin said. “I haven’t experienced anything, but there is a lot going on in the bathrooms in Holy Cross. You’ll hear people walk in and do their nightly routines, but there’s nobody there.”The last stop on the tour was Le Mans Hall, where students heard the stories of people from building services finding a child’s hand print on a window, security staff feeling a cold chill in the un-airconditioned Stapleton Lounge and a student seeing a man in Queen’s Court — reportedly one of the most haunted hallways in the building — run past her and through a wall during her nightly rounds as a Resident Assistant. Tags: ghost stories, Quiet Hours, saint mary’slast_img read more

We played perfect game: Rohit

first_imgMumbai, May 17: Mumbai Indians skipper Rohit Sharma has termed the IPL game against Kings XI Punjab, which they won by three runs, as “perfect”.After a brilliant batting display on Wednesday, Mumbai bowlers managed to restrict Punjab to 183/5 to bag two crucial points and stay alive in the league.“I thought we played a perfect game. Whatever we asked from the boys, they came and delivered in the middle,” Rohit said after the match.“Knew it was going to be a good pitch. Lost the plot in the middle, could have got 10-15 runs more. Those things happen. Been happening for us a number of times now,” he added.With this victory, Mumbai are now sitting at fourth spot with 12 points while Punjab have slipped to sixth spot.Rohit also praised West Indian power-hitter Keiron Pollard, who finally found his groove with a fiery 50.Pollard struck a 23-ball 50, containing five boundaries and three sixes and more importantly was engaged in a 65-run fifth wicket stand with Krunal Pandya (32 off 23 balls; 4×1, 6×2) to steady Mumbai’s start that saw Punjab pacer Andrew Tye (4/16) striking thrice in the powerplay.“Pollard has always been a match-winner for us. Leaving him out was a tough decision. We thought now was the time to bring him back. Not to take away from Duminy who hasn’t got opportunities,” Rohit said.“We thought if he’s batting down the order, Pollard will be the better option for us. Come the big game, Pollard stands up for us. He was disappointed at being left out. What he did with the bat today, that’s what he does,” he added. IANSlast_img read more