The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) today has vigorously
condemned the permanent harassment of a journalist in The Gambia, who is
obliged since December 10, to report every week for questioning at the National
Intelligence Agency (NIA).
“This continuous harassment and a moral torture of Abdoulie John must
stop. As journalist he was just doing his job. Authorities must end these never
ending interrogations of the National Intelligence Agency (NIA) and let
journalist Abdoulie John work freely,” said Gabriel Baglo, IFJ Africa
Abdoulie John, editor of an online newspaper, Joloff News, and Associated Press’s
stringer in The Gambia was arrested on Sunday 9 December 2012 by security
forces on the order of the NIA after a confrontation with President Yaya
Jammeh’s personal photographer, Sulaylan Gassama who reportedly insisted on knowing who
had invited John to the ceremony.
The incident took place in the Gambian village of
Tambakunda where John was covering the handing over of eight Senegalese
soldiers released after a 14-month detention by the rebels in the South
Casamance region. The NIA Director ordered security forces to arrest the
journalist who was later released on bail
of 1500 US dollars on December 10 and asked to report to the NIA every week.
His passport was kept and he has been asked
to hand over his laptop and mobile phones.
The IFJ denounces the fact that the investigation has taken another
dimension with investigators willing to charge the journalist by all means. “Our
colleague is in grave danger in a country where independent reporting is seen
as a sin by authorities. We support him and have kept an eye on his security”,
For more information, please contact IFJ: +221 33 867 95 86
The IFJ represents over 600.000 journalists in 134 countries