Punitive legislation

The freedom to inform has improved in Malawi for the past 15 years and the number of abuses against reporters has fallen dramatically. A law allowing journalists to request information about elected officials and government institutions was finally promulgated in February 2017, more than 12 years after it was first mooted, but implementing it fully is taking time. Meanwhile, a law still provides for the imprisonment of those who “insult” the head of state. And a cybersecurity law adopted in 2016 allows for the imprisonment for those who simply post “offensive” content. These laws could be used against journalists and bloggers during the national assembly and presidential elections in 2019, especially as the Daily Times media group had to apologize in February 2018 after the ruling party criticized a report that appeared to favour the main opposition political party. The tax department closed the headquarters of another media group critical of the government a few months later.

in the 2019 World Press Freedom Index



64 in 2018

Global score


27.43 in 2018

  • 0
    journalists killed in 2020
  • 0
    citizens journalists killed in 2020
  • 0
    media assistants killed in 2020
Go to the barometre