Juba, January 18, 2019 (SSNA) — South Sudanese government suppression of the media and recent order to ban the local news outlets from covering ongoing Sudan’s protests must come to an end, the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) said in a statement obtained by the South Sudan News Agency (SSNA).
The agency said South Sudan is denying Journalists right to freedom of the press, branding the practice “absurd.” The announcement comes nearly two weeks after South Sudan’s Media Authority ordered the dominant Juba-based local Arabic newspaper, Al-Watan, to stop printing or writing about protests in Sudan.
“The absurd order gagging Al-Watan from covering events of public interest in a neighboring country exposes South Sudan’s hostility towards its citizens’ right to information. The South Sudanese Media Authority ought to immediately lift the ban on Al-Watan‘s reporting and guarantee that all of the press can cover the crisis in Sudan independently,” CPJ’s Sub-Saharan Africa representative, Muthoki Mumo, said.
South Sudan has banned all media outlets operating in the country to stop writing or publishing stories related to Sudan protests, accusing the media of trying to further incite the problem. Juba also said early this month that South Sudanese President Salva Kiir fully supports Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir and that Khartoum is the key to the ongoing peace process in the country.