New press code doesn’t decriminalize press offences
Regarded as one of Africa’s most stable democracies, Senegal enjoys a diverse media landscape. The 2001 constitution guarantees the freedom to inform, and abuses against journalists have been relatively infrequent in recent years. However, some subjects continue to be off limits and the staff of several media outlets have been summoned and subjected to intimidation for covering corruption. Radio stations that interview government critics may be harassed and their journalists convicted of defamation, but this is relatively rare. After several years of discussion, a new press code was adopted 2017 but the required implementation decrees have yet to be signed. The new code disappointed journalists because it failed to decriminalize press offences and because it provides for the confiscation of equipment and material and even the closure of media outlets for threats to state security. The planned switch to digital terrestrial television (DTTV) in 2020 is also a source of concern because transmission costs and fees could hamper the creation of a new TV channel.
49 in 2019
25.81 in 2019