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UJOSS, CEPO urge gov’t to end persecution of journalists

By Yiep Joseph

The Union of Journalists of South Sudan (UJOSS) in collaboration with Community Empowerment for Progress Organization (CEPO) have called on the government to put end to impunity for crimes committed against journalists in the country.

In a Joint statement availed to Juba Monitorreleased ahead of commemoration of the International Day to End Impunity for Crimes against Journalists,UJOSS and CEPO urged the stakeholders including security personnel to end impunity for crimes committed against journalists.

“As South Sudan marks this year’s ‘International Day to End Impunity for Crimes against Journalists’ on 2 November, the Union of Journalists of South Sudan (UJOSS) andCEPO urge all stakeholders, including security personnel, to end impunity for crimes committed against journalists in the country” the statement read.

Bothinstitutions expressed their concern over the rampant mistreatment of journalists and media houses in the country.

“UJOSS and CEPO are concerned about the persistent increase in the assaults, threats, intimidations, arrests and detentions of journalists as well as closure of media houses” added

“The 2021 International Day to End Impunity for Crimes against Journalists highlights the instrumental role of prosecutorial services, investigating and prosecuting not only killings, but also threats of violence against journalists” it expressed

UJOSS and CEPO also   urged the authorities to respect journalists

“However, as we approach the day, we call for an end to all crimes and threats against journalists and urge all relevant stakeholders in the country, including members of the security personnel to respect the work which journalists do” the statement read.

UJOSS and CEPO urge authorities in South Sudan to always investigate cases involving journalists before taking actions.

“The issue if impunity against journalists in South Sudan is real and clear evidence that freedom of expression and the rights to information is still problematic in the country,” said Edmund Yakani, the Executive Director of CEPO.

The role of journalists in the country remained crucial, especially during this time of the peace agreement implementation, constitution making process and elections slated for 2023.

UJOSS and CEPO urged the Media Authority of South Sudan, Information Commission and the Communication Authority to take the lead towards ending impunity against journalists.

“The development of the code of conduct for journalist by the Media Authority of South Sudan is a great step towards correcting the situation of impunity against journalists. CEPO and UJOSS will partner with the Media Authority to disseminate the journalist’ code of conduct,” noted Yakani.

Both organizations notified the public regarding the commemoration of this special day.

“The United Nations General Assembly proclaimed 2 November as the ‘International Day to End Impunity for Crimes against Journalists’ in General Assembly Resolution A/RES/68/163. The date was chosen in commemoration of the assassination of two French journalists in Mali on 2 November 2013” the statement read.

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