Human Rights Centre calls on the government of Somaliland to release Abdimalik Mouse Oldoon, a freelance journalist, who was arrested on 15th February by the government over accusations that he supported and campaigned for a presidential candidate in presidential election that took place in Mogadishu on 8th February, Human Right Centre said today in a press release.
Abdimalik was arrested after he returned from Mogadishu, sources confirmed to HRC. On 18th February he was brought to Hargeisa Regional Court which remanded him seven days in custody. On 26th February the court remanded him another seven days. He was not brought to court after the expiration of the seven days. He is now in Hargeisa Central Prison.
The police accuses Abdimalik of “anti-national activity of a citizen abroad” and “publication of false news capable of disturbing the public order”, according to the initial charges submitted by the police.
“The main basis of the accusations against Abdimalik is opinions he posted in his Facebook page. Freedom of speech and expression are guaranteed by the constitution. Detaining someone for mere expression of opinion is against the constitution,” says Guleid Ahmed Jama, the chairperson of Human Rights Centre.
“Somaliland shall not be annoyed by any opinion contrary to the dominant narrative. The people should be able to express their opinions without fear of reprisal,’ he added.
Human Rights Centre requests the government of Somaliland to release Abdimalik and drop all the charges against him.
Guleid Ahmed Jama
Chairperson of Human Rights Centre