Sierra Leone

Sierra Leone

Free not to make waves

Sierra Leone’s media are pluralist and independent, and community radio stations, which reach a significant part of the population, broadcast without restriction. Julius Maada Bio, who has been president since April 2018, has kept his promises with regard to protecting journalists. The 1965 public order law criminalising defamation and press offences, under which journalists were often arrested arbitrarily, was repealed in August 2020, while the Independent Media Commission law was revised. During the 2014-2016 state of emergency resulting from the Ebola epidemic, the threat of defamation charges was widely used to gag the media, forcing journalists to censor themselves or in some cases even go into hiding. A journalist with the Freetown-based Times newspaper was detained on a libel charge for 24 hours in November 2019 in connection with a story that had not yet been published.

in the 2021 World Press Freedom Index



85 in 2020

Global score


30.28 in 2020

  • 0
    journalists killed in 2022
  • 0
    citizens journalists killed in 2022
  • 0
    media assistants killed in 2022
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