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Threat to press freedom as Aljazeera journalist declared wanted

July 22, 2016 By Patrick Jaiah Kamara

National Coordinator in the Office of the Government Spokesman has confirmed to journalists that Aljazeera journalist, Nena Devries, is wanted by the government.

Devries recently interviewed star musician Emmerson Bockarie on freedom of expression in the country, and it seems the government is not quite happy with the broadcast.

Ajibu Jalloh told newsmen yesterday that information that the journalist broadcast on the popular channel, which has gone viral on social media, was concocted, claiming it did not come from the music icon.

“Absolutely, her information is not correct. We have been given the task to look for her; once we got hold of her we are going to question her for disseminating false information. We are worried that people would not continue to disseminate false information,” he said, adding that “we believe in democracy, we believe in the rule of law, we believe in free speech.”

A clip from the broadcast, which was played for journalists, states that since the fearless musician released his album titled ‘Munku boss pa matches’, the government has denied him access to launch in the capital without any good explanation, adding that a billboard bearing  his face has been defaced.

She clip also quotes the musician to have alleged that he had been threatened by government officials, while radio disc jockeys have been warned by station managers not to give air time to the hit song, which parodies greed, corruption and profligate personal spending by members of the government.

However, the wanted journalist also featured Deputy Information Minister, Cornelius Deveaux, in the broad, who remarked that government was very much committed to promoting free expression.

But to declare the journalist wanted connotes an apparent threat to press freedom.

Meanwhile, it remains unclear whether the journalist is still in the country or not.