The satirical magazine Sal Piment ,which is highly critical of the government of President Denis Sassou Nguesso, was suspended several weeks ago by the country’s media regulator, High Council for Freedom of Communication (CSLC).
According to media reports, Raymond Malonga was arrested at a hospital in the capital city Brazzaville where he was admitted fro for malaria treatment . He was taken to the capital’s main prison and held in a quarantine area for detainees with Covid-19.
Journalists’ unions and human rights groups condemned the arrest of Raymond Malonga as an act of intimidation to silence the media, ahead of the presidential elections on 21 March.
The General Secretary of the IFJ, Anthony Bellanger, said: “The IFJ condemns the arrest of Raymond Malonga, which seems to be a clear targeted reprisal for his work. We call on the Government of President Denis Sassou Nguesso to release him immediately and unconditionally and urge the authorities to guarantee freedom of information and expression before and during the incoming elections."