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Queirós Anastácio Chiluvia

Working illegally as a journalist was among the charges brought against Queirós Anastácio Chiluvia, news director of the opposition radio station Despertar, in February this year. It all began when the journalist went past a police station in a suburb of Luanda when he heard calls for help from detainees in the cells. Having tried unsuccessfully to obtain information from the police officers, he recorded the prisoners’ calls and broadcast them on his station’s airwaves. They were asking for medical assistance for a fellow prisoner who was dying of tuberculosis in an overcrowded cell. Chiluvia was immediately arrested and brought before a judge who gave him a six-month suspended sentence for defamation, offending the police and working illegally as a journalist. That is the price paid by a journalist in Angola for using the media to try to save a life. Chiluvia is still involved with Despertar radio, an essential counterweight in a country where freedom of speech can be easily denied.