Political deadlock curtails media freedom
The parliamentary elections held in March 2019 failed to end the years of instability that began with a military coup in 2012 and continued with Prime Minister Domingos Simões Pereira’s ouster three years later by José Mario Vaz, whose presidency ended in February 2020. The political impasse during these years has polarized the media and journalists, weakened them and left them extremely vulnerable to political influence and pressure. It has also resulted in an increase in government meddling in the state-owned media, whose directors have all been replaced. The staff of the public TV broadcaster, TGB, went on strike for the same reason in January 2019. In February 2020, soldiers sympathetic to Umaro Sissoco Embaló, the newly declared winner of a two-round presidential election, occupied the headquarters of the state radio and TV, accusing its journalists of “bias” in favour of Embaló’s rival in the second round, held in December 2019. The right of access to information is not guaranteed and journalists still usually censor themselves when covering governmental shortcomings, organized crime and the military’s continuing influence. Some journalists have fled abroad to escape threats and intimidation.
89 in 2019
30.95 in 2019