Tougher legislation on online content
Although seen as one of the model African countries regarding respect for human rights and democracy, journalists can be sentenced to imprisonment on a charge of offending public order. Amendments to the Information and Communication Technologies Act in 2018 significantly reinforced the legislative arsenal, providing for prison sentences for those who post content that could cause “inconvenience, distress or anxiety.” This could clearly be used to intimidate outspoken journalists in the run-up to the parliamentary elections in late 2019. The environment for the media is not hostile, but stories involving tourism, corruption, the nation’s various communities or religious radicalization are difficult to cover, if not entirely off limits. Three journalists with the newspaper L’Express were briefly arrested in September 2017 over a story implicating a former justice minister in alleged money laundering.
58 in 2019
28.46 in 2019