January 27, 2020 - Updated on January 28, 2020

Three journalist arrested, two radio stations closed in Gambia

Anti-government demonstration in Banjul, Decembrer 2019. @AFP
Reporters Without Borders (RSF) is extremely concerned about Sunday’s serious press freedom violations in Gambia, where three journalists were arrested and others were attacked during a banned protest in the capital, and the authorities closed two radio stations.

    The protesters were calling for President Adama Barrow to resign on completing the first three years of his five-year term, as he had promised to do when he took office


The detained journalists are Giby Jallow, the manager of King FM, a member of his staff, and Pa Modou Bojang, the manager of Home Digital FM. The authorities closed their radio stations for allegedly inciting violence in breach of the terms of their licences.


According to the information gathered by RSF, protesters attacked a Gambia Radio Television Services crew and Sankulley Janko, West Africa Democracy Radio reporter during the protest.


A few hours before that, the authorities rescinded Al Jazeera correspondent Nicolas Hague’s accreditation, claiming that the TV channel’s reporting had a pro-opposition “bias.”


“We are extremely concerned about these serious violation of the freedom to inform in Gambia, a country that has progressed more than any other in Africa in the past two years,” said Assane Diagne, the director of RSF’s West Africa office. “We call for the immediate release of the detained journalists, the reopening of the radio stations and the creation of conditions that allow the media to operate freely.”


Gambia is ranked 92nd out of 180 countries in RSF’s 2019 World Press Freedom Index.