Tag Archives: West Africa

West Africa is a gold field for cyber criminals – Report

20 Jul

West Africa’s finance sector most vulnerable to cyber attack, says new report (Photo Credit: Mantle Thought)

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Lawyer confirms Senegal’s ‘expulsion’ of Gambian opposition leader

7 Jan
Sheikh Sidia Bayo speaking to Senegalese media (Photo taken from Twitter)

Sheikh Sidia Bayo speaking to Senegalese media (Photo taken from Twitter)

“We received an official notification from the Senegalese authorities that my client [Sheikh Sidia] Bayo will be expelled in the coming hours from Senegal,” his lawyer, Assane Dioma Ndiaye, is quoted as saying by Reuters on Monday.

Reports in Dakar, the capital of Gambia‘s neighbour, Senegal, are that the government is preparing to deport Bayo, a France-based Gambian and leader of the National Transitional Council of The Gambia (NTCG) – after he called for an overthrow the Gambian regime.

Senegal’s decision follows a December 30, 2014 armed group attack on the presidential palace in Banjul, the capital overnight – with heavy gunfire that lasted hours – President Yahya Jammeh was out of the country, and it was repelled. Continue reading

Pres. Jammeh appoints another journalist as minister

5 Jan
The Gambia's new Information Minister, Sheriff Bojang, is the proprietor of The Standard, an independent daily newspaper based in Bakau, seven kilometers outside the capital, Banjul. (Photo Credit: Facebook/Sheriff Bojang)

The Gambia‘s new Information Minister, Sheriff Bojang, is the proprietor of The Standard, an independent daily newspaper based in Bakau, seven kilometers outside the capital, Banjul. (Photo Credit: Facebook/Sheriff Bojang)

The Gambia’s president Yahya Jammeh Monday announced the appointment of journalist Sheriff Bojang as Minister Information and Communication Infrastructure.

Mr. Bojang, a former managing director of the pro-government Daily Observer newspaper, is the proprietor of The Standard, an independent daily newspaper based in Bakau, seven kilometers outside the capital, Banjul.

The post has remained vacant since the sacking of Nana Grey-Johnson, also a journalist, axed in November 2013, four months after presiding over one of the most draconian media laws in recent times, (an adjusted version of the 2009 Information and Communication Act) that allows for prison terms of up to 15 years for “spread false news online.”

Also, TV broadcaster and former minister of Trade, Industry and Employment, and minister of Communication, Information and Technology, Neneh Macdouall-Gaye, has been appointed Gambia’s minister of Foreign Affairs.

She, a former ambassador to the United States and host of TV programme Talking Point Africa USA, replaces Mr. Bala Garba Jahumpa who  returns to his former position as minister of Transport, Works and Infrastructure. Continue reading

Gambia jails blogger Sait Matty Jaw again

11 Dec
Sait Matty Jaw's photo taken at Goree Island, Senegal - #Orangeurhood shows his support to end violance against women (Photo Credit: SaitMattyJaw/Facebook)

Sait Matty Jaw’s photo taken at Goree Island, Senegal – #Orangeurhood shows his support to end violence against women (Photo Credit: SaitMattyJaw/Facebook)

By Modou S. Joof

A lower court in Banjul, Gambia‘s capital, has sent to jail Mr. Sait Matty Jaw, a blogger and an administrator at the government-owned University, over allegations of “conspiracy”, “failure to register a business”, and “disobeying statutory duty”.

FPI understands the charges stem from a research on “good governance and corruption” that he and two others: a Ghanian, Seth Yaw Kandeh and, a Nigerian, Olufemi Erinle Titus were involved.  They’ve all denied the charges but have been remanded.

On Wednesday, the Banjul Magistrates’ Court, also called BMC, heard from a State lawyer, Abdourahman Bah, that the three had in October 2014 conspired to commit an offence by “operating and carrying out business without registration”. Continue reading

The Gambia’s human rights under scrutiny: Rights groups raise concerns

28 Oct
Thumbs Down: Rights groups say human rights situation in Gambia “shrinking" (Photo Credit: MSJoof/TNBES/FPI)

Thumbs Down: Rights groups say human rights situation in Gambia “shrinking” (Photo Credit: MSJoof/TNBES/FPI)

By Modou S. Joof

The press freedom and free expression advocacy agency, ARTICLE 19, has raised concerns at Gambia’s “shrinking” human rights record Tuesday.

The Gambia, a small West African country which is no stranger to criticisms over rights abuses by human rights groups, opposition parties and journalists, is today (October 28, 2014) appearing before UN Human Rights Council for its Universal Periodic Review (UPR).

A statement from the multinational rights group says it calls for concerted regional and international efforts to “stop the violent repression against free voices and end impunity.” Continue reading

‘Internet law furthers crackdown on free expression’

11 Jul
English: freedom of expression, Expression of ...

ARTICLE19 calls on the UN and ACHPR Special Rapporteurs on Freedom of Expression to urge the Gambian government to repeal this law and all other laws that unduly restrict expression in the country. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

By FPI

The global press freedom and free expression watchdog, ARTICLE 19, has condemned The Gambia’s adoption of an internet law which it said “furthers Government crackdown on freedom of expression”.

The July 3, 2013 Information and Communication (amendment) Act 2013 severely restricts the right to freedom of expression on the internet, criminalising online speech, ARTICLE19 said on Wednesday.

“The newly adopted law is the latest attempt by the Gambian authorities to stifle dissent in a country that already has some of the harshest laws on the right to freedom of expression in Africa,” says Aliou Niane, ARTICLE 19 Programme Officer Safety and Security West Africa. Continue reading

The Gambia: MFWA alarmed by ‘threat to online freedom’

11 Jul
Deutsch: Marina Parade

“Such amendments provoke suspicion of an inevitable crackdown on dissenting views and the media in general which cannot be justified under any circumstances,” a member of The Gambia Press Union has said. Marina Parade, Banjul (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

By FPI

The Media Foundation for West Africa, MFWA,on Monday said it is alarmedby the recent amendments to The Gambia’s laws “aimed at imposing stiffer punishments and stifling freedom of expression online”.

On July 3, the National Assembly in Banjul, the Gambian capital, passed into law an amendment to the Information and Communication Act 2013, imposing stiffer sanctions on persons found guilty of using the internet to spread false news.

The amended Act specifies that a person commits a criminal offence if he or she uses the internet to spread false news against the government, incite dissatisfaction or instigate violence against the government, caricature, abuse or make derogatory statements against public officials.

Under the law, offenders will be jailed up to 15 years or fined an amount of three million Dalasi (about US$100,000). Continue reading

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