19th January 2017- The government’s appeal against regional court judgment that acquitted Abdirashid Nour Ways, the chairman of Hubsad newspaper and the editor-in-chief, Saed Khadar Abdilahi, will be heard by Hargeisa Regional Appeal Court in 23rd January 2017, according to Abdirashid Nour Ways.
On 12th November 2016, Hargeisa Regional Court acquitted the two journalists who were accused of publication of false news and running unlicensed newspaper.
The Office of the Attorney General appealed against the court decision and demands the imprisonment of the two journalists.
“The journalists did not do anything criminal, but they were simply doing their work as journalists. It is unacceptable the government to harass the critical journalists and shut down their media houses. Hubsad, Codka Shacabka and Haatuf newspapers are all closed by the government,” says Guleid Ahmed Jama, the chairperson of Human Rights Centre.
“We call on the government to withdraw the appeal and respect the freedom of media guaranteed by the constitution of Somaliland and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The Regional Court acquitted the journalists, but endorsed the suspension of the newspaper. The judgement was absurd and unfavourable to the freedom of media. Now the Attorney General is demanding harsher judgement,” adds Guleid.
Guleid Ahmed Jama
Chairperson of Human Rights Centre