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Media
Media threatened with defamation suits over judicial scandal publications PDF Print E-mail
Media
Written by MFWA   
Saturday, 21 November 2015 18:25
A lawyer representing a group of judges implicated in a recent corruption scandal in Ghana has threatened that his clients will sue media organisations which publish the documentary video on the scandal.
 
The lawyer, Nii Kpakpo Addo, issued the threats on privately-owned Citi FM in Accra on November 18, 2015.
 
“Monday or Tuesday, you will see that we will be bringing up defamation suits that will touch on every single person that has been associated with the said petition, who has republished the defamatory material,” Addo said. “Republication of defamatory materials itself is defamation, so whether you uttered it or you republished it, you should be prepared to meet us in court.”
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How African Free Expression Organisations Marked Day on Safety of Journalists and the Issue of Impunity. PDF Print E-mail
Media
Written by press statement   
Monday, 09 November 2015 14:09

On Monday November 2, 2015, member organisations of the African Freedom of Expression Exchange (AFEX), made up of the nine most prominent free expression rights advocacy organisations on the continent, joined the global press freedom community to mark the UN-designated International Day to End Impunity for Crimes against Journalists.

AFEX is made up of the Centre for Media Studies and Peacebuilding (CEMESP) in Liberia; Media Rights Agenda (MRA) in Nigeria; Media Institute of Southern Africa (MISA);  Media Foundation for West Africa (MFWA) in Ghana; National Union of Somali Journalists (NUSOJ) in Somalia; Journalists en Danger (JED) in Democratic Republic of Congo; Human Rights Network of Journalists (HRNJ-U) in Uganda; Africa Freedom of Information Centre (AFIC) in Uganda; and the West African Journalists Association (WAJA) in Senegal.

Here are brief highlights of activities carried out by AFEX members to highlight the need for countries to protect journalists and to punish crimes against journalists as a way of fighting impunity.

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INTERNATIONAL DAY TO END IMPUNITY: Countries Must Be Committed To Safety Of Journalists PDF Print E-mail
Media
Written by MFWA   
Wednesday, 04 November 2015 20:47

As the world celebrates World Impunity Day today November 2, 2015, the MFWA urges countries in West Africa to be committed to safety of journalists and ensure justice for victims of free expression violations.

In 2013, the UN General Assembly passed a Resolution on the Safety of Journalists and the Issue of Impunity. The Resolution urged Member States to prevent violence against journalists and media workers, ensure accountability and bring to justice perpetrators of crimes against journalists and media workers. The Resolution also called on States to promote a safe and enabling environment for journalists to perform their work independently and without undue interference.

According to the MFWA’s Press Freedom Violation Monitoring Report, 100 cases of press freedom violations were recorded in 2014 alone. This included attacks and threats, arbitrary arrests, cases of censorship and punitive fines. Even before 2015 ends, the MFWA has recorded 102 press freedom violations. These violations have mainly been in the form of physical attacks, arbitrary arrests and detentions. More than 130 journalists have been victims of free expression violations.

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IMC CONCLUDES TEN COMPLAINTS: RADIO STATIONS AND NEWSPAPERS FINED PDF Print E-mail
Media
Written by press statement   
Tuesday, 06 October 2015 11:57

The Independent Media Commission (IMC) has concluded ten (10) complaints against media institutions and practitioners. The Board fined eight newspapers and warned two. The matters were inquired into by the IMC’s Complaints Committee. The Board of the IMC at its meeting of Wednesday 23rd September, 2015 endorsed and ratified the recommendations of the Complaints Committee, and imposed different penalties for breaches of the IMC Media Code of Practice, 2007 and the IMC Act of 2000 as amended in 2006 and 2007.

On the complaint of Mrs. Adama Buya-Kamara against the Managing Editor, Trumpet Newspaper, the IMC Board warned the newspaper and endorsed the Complaints Committee’s recommendations. The Committee had recommended that the newspaper publishes another retraction with due prominence and do a good write-up as promised.  Mrs. Buya-Kamara complained that she had been named in a debt scandal, mentioning the name and position of her husband who was not concerned and knew nothing about the said loan. The Managing Editor told the Committee that upon realizing that the publication had offended Mrs. Buya-Kamara and was also not in the public interest, did a retraction.

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SLAJ disowns pseudo-media group PDF Print E-mail
Media
Written by press statement   
Friday, 04 September 2015 06:57

THURSDAY SEPTEMBER 3, 2015 – The attention of the Executive of the Sierra Leone Association of Journalists (SLAJ) has been drawn to a group calling itself the 'Media Alliance for Development', which is purportedly going around presenting awards to institutions and individuals and in the process allegedly demanding monies.

SLAJ wishes to make it abundantly clear for the benefit of the general public that its membership does not include ANY of the individuals involved with the so-called Media Alliance for Development.

SLAJ has no relationship whatsoever with this purported group. Media Alliance for Development is NOT and has NEVER been an affiliate or associate of SLAJ, and neither has any of its members.

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Editorial

26th IPRA Conference in Sierra Leone Ends on a High Note

The International Peace Research Association (IPRA) successfully held its 26th General Conference on ‘Agenda for Peace and Development: Conflict Prevention, Post-Conflict Transformation, and the Conflict, Disaster Risk and Sustainable Development Debate’ in collaboration with the 10TH Dealing With Disasters Series, Northumbria University (UK)and Sakarya University (Turkey) and  the University of  Sierra Leone at the Bintumani Conference Centre in Freetown, Sierra Leone from November 27 to 1st December 2016.

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Business News

PARLIAMENT RATIFIES TWO AGREEMENTS TO IMPROVE ON PORTS FACILITIES

The Parliament of Sierra Leone on Monday 04th December 2017 debated and ratified two additional agreements aimed at improving and expanding Ports facilities in Sierra Leone to be at par with international best practices.

Presenting both Agreements prior to ratification, the Minister of Transport and Aviation, Balogun Koroma said that the additional Agreements are geared towards addressing some of the concerns raised by MPs, in respect of expanding our Ports facilities to accommodate larger vessels, and the issuance of license with the view of combating money laundering, contra-band goods, and attracting more funds for Government.

Hon. Dr. Bernadette Lahai, Minority Leader of the House, also supported the ratification of the two Agreements, saying if our Ports are not developed, we would not be able to attract huge vessels; thus the need for the continuous improvement of our Ports facilities.

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Media News

Two veteran Journalists, now in the United States have paid a courtesy call on Sierra Leone's Ambassador

Two very respected and veteran Journalists who are in the United States of America for various reasons have called on Sierra Leone’s Amr. Bockari Kortu Stevens not only to appreciate the work of the Embassy, but also to pay courtesy as protocol demands.

Mr. Rod Mac-Johnson, former Lecturer Fourah Bay College, former Director of Information Ministry of Information and Communications, Former Director Sierra Leone News Agency (SLENA), Former Chairman Independent Media Commission (IMC) and stringer French News Agency  etc. is on vacation and Mr. Cyril Juxon Smith Director Information and Communications House of Parliament, former Acting Director General Sierra Leone Broadcasting Service (SLBS) and former UNESCO Media Consultant  is in the United States of America to attend the funeral of his father.

Speaking at the Ambassador’s residence on 4821 Colorado Avenue, Washington DC  Mr. Rod Mac-Johnson said “Thank  you Amr. Stevens for accommodating us in the middle of your tight schedule, and also to discuss with us in a homely spirit.

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Commentary

Reasons why Sierra Leoneans Must Think beyond Tribal and Regional Lines Before Casting their Ballots This Time

As the national or general elections loom in Sierra Leone and, as a true citizen, I solemnly pray and hope with all hopes that Sierra Leoneans of the voting age will consider carefully who they would vote for, come March 2018. The divisive and immature nature of politics as it exists in Sierra Leone has, to a greater extent, contributed to the country lagging behind nearly all other countries in terms of progressive development. My readers should be mindful of the fact that certain countries in Africa would rather develop retrogressively than progressively, a situation wherein governments embark on ego-boosting programs that aren’t beneficial to the average citizen.

A government which expends its energy for the benefit of the people is a progressive government and that is what Sierra Leoneans want at this time after being in the doldrums for ages. It is therefore absolutely necessary for fellow citizens to refrain from casting their valued votes in favor of candidates because of tribal or regional affiliations but on how genuine and capable that candidate is, otherwise stagnation in progress is bound to follow.

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View Point

Youth Unemployment Is A Killer Virus In Sierra Leone

“I studied Sociology at NjalaUniversity and graduated in 2015 but still unemployed despite several interviews being attended. I am currently awaiting my MSc at Njala University which is to be awarded early next year,” said 29 year old MabintyKamara.

“I graduated in 2012 with Honours from the Department of Accounting, Fourah Bay College, University of Sierra Leone. I have sent several job applications; the only long job I got was with the International Medical Corps during the deadly Ebola virus and since then no job. I was also a volunteer teacher but the Minister of Education, Science and Technology did not approve me and others after almost a year of voluntary service so I quit,” said 31 year old Mohamed LaminKanneh.

In Sierra Leone, despite the numerous promises made by President Ernest BaiKoroma to figuratively ‘lay his life for the youth,’ unemployment among youth is one of the highest with no end in sight to reduce the spate of this social menace. According to the United Nations Development Program, approximately 70% of youth are underemployed or unemployed and an estimated 800,000 youth today are actively searching for employment.

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News - Press Release

Sierra Leone receives US$10 Million Supplemental Financing from World Bank as support to Landslide and Flooding

FREETOWN, December 13, 2017 —The World Bank Group has approved aSupplemental Financing (SF) in the amount of US$10 million to help the Government of Sierra Leone meet immediate needs associated with the landslide and flooding disaster that struck Freetown on August 14, 2017.The SF is a grant, provided as a supplemental budget support operation that will flow directly into the Government’s budget.

The funding, under the First Productivity and Transparency Support Credit (PTSC-I), will ensure that the reforms supported under thisoperation remain on track and are implemented without the risk of delays due to competing capacity or budgetary priorities arising from the post-disaster recovery. It will also help with the rebuilding of critical infrastructuredestroyed during the landslide and flooding.

Since the end of the Ebola epidemic, the Government of Sierra Leone (GoSL) has initiated substantive reforms to boost productivity, restore fiscal stability, and gradually rebuild buffers. The Government initiated substantive reforms, focusing on agriculture, fisheries and energy, supported by the First Productivity and Transparency Support Credit (PTSC-I), to boost productivity and start rebuilding the country's buffers.

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Society -Local News

ANNIE WALSH WINS HUMAN RIGHTS DEBATE
Fatmata Binta Jalloh Annie Walsh Memorial Secondary School has won this years’ Human Rights Commission of Sierra Leone Inter-Secondary School debate on the topic ‘respect for human rights as a pre-requisite for a politically tolerant and peaceful 2018 elections’.  
The debate which was held at the Sierra Leone Library Board with five Secondary Schools participating is part of series of activities undertaken by HRCSL in commemorating the International Human Rights Day Celebration on December 10th, 2017. Fatmata Binta Jalloh of the Annie Walsh Memorial School came first by defeating Amos Claudius Gordon from the Prince of Wales who came second, Abubakar Marrah from Saint Edwards Secondary School came third and Kelfala Kamara of the Government Model Secondary School came fourth and Evelyn T. Ahorney from the Saint Joseph’s Secondary School coming fifth.
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Development

World Bank Group Boosts Financing for West African Power Pool Regional Power Transmission Project

FREETOWN, December13, 2017 —The World Bank Group on November 17, 2017 approved Additional Financing in the amount of US$59.57 million to West African Power Pool (WAPP) - Côte d’Ivoire, Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Guinea (CLSG) PowerInterconnection Project, which aims to increase electricity supply in the four participating countries.

The project will interconnect the four participating countries into the 225 kV (kilo volt) regional energy market in West Africa, and will also enable the connection to the WAPP of the planned hydropower plants in Bumbuna Extension, Yiben and Bekongor in Sierra Leone and Mount Coffee in Liberia and other future generation projects.

The Project will provide residents of Greater Monrovia Area in Liberia; Bo, Kenema and the Western Areas in Sierra Leone; and the Forest Region of Guinea, with improvements in power supplies in the short-term. It also pursues a regional infrastructure developmental approach that will provide over the medium- to long-term adequate electricity to the people of the four countries in a more efficient and cost effective way, boosting economic and social development.

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Politics

It will not be Business as Usual…Bio assures Diaspora

He was passionate, confident and assuring as he addressed hundreds of Sierra Leoneans at the prestigious Royal Regency Hall in London on Saturday 9th December 2017 with a very simple message that as the next President it will not be business as usual. For a man who has a solid track record as a disciplinarian, Rtd. Brigadier Julius Maada Bio continues to attract many voters who feel the country needs a strong and disciplined leadership.

Cataloguing the current state of the country, Bio spoke about a divided country, the poor drowning in poverty, rich swimming in affluence, poor governance, battered economy, high public debt, third hungriest country, high inflation among others . He also reminded his audience that many of the things which necessitated the war such as bad governance, mismanagement of the economy, injustice have been the features of the current APC Government.

However, Bio's message was not just about the doom and gloom but also making a case why he is the right choice that the country needs. He spoke about his track record, experience and how he has always put his country first. "Some have come with slogan, country first, but I served my country first at a very tender age. I did not go around the world to work and come back old to say country first. When I was young I gave my life to our country," a passionate Bio said.

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