The Deputy Editor-In-Chief of the Daily Observer newspaper, Mr. Hatab Fadera, has been sacked on Monday.
Journalists at the pro-government daily have told FPI: “No reason has been given for his sacking, and his passport has been seized by operatives of the National Intelligence Agency (NIA).”
Having worked at the Daily Observer where he started as a freelance reporter, Mr. Fadera rose through the ranks, becoming a senior reporter and a presidential affairs correspondent. Last year, he was appointed deputy editor-in-chief, the third highest position at the paper.
Journalists at the Daily Observer have endured several crackdowns over the years.
In September 2014, Alagie Jobe, a deputy editor-in-chief of the Daily Observer at the time, was acquitted and discharged of sedition charges – having been in the custody of the State since his arrest in February 2013.
In June 2013, a former news editor of the paper, Assan Sallah, fled to neighbouring Senegal following reports of his imminent sacking and possible arrest.
In July 2006, Daily Observer journalist ‘Chief’ Ebrima Manneh went missing after he was reportedly arrested by officials of the NIA. The government has since denied holding him and his whereabouts remains unknown eight years on.