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Activist warns hard times ahead for media freedom after Jonglei gov’t ordered journalists to register

JUBA, JANUARY 28th 2023 (SUDANS POST) – A prominent activist in South Sudan’s restive Jonglei state has expressed concerns over a decision by the government in the restive state to register all the journalists working in the area, warning that it is the beginning of hard times for media personnel.

In a letter dated 26th January2023, the Jonglei State Ministry of Information and Communication urged journalists to head to its premise to register within two weeks’ time starting January 30th.

The order by the government comes days after the national media regulator in Juba ordered journalists across the country’s capital to register for accreditation failure of which will result in the journalists being denied to do his job including coverage of Pope Francis’ visit.

Speaking to Sudans Post on Saturday, activist Bol Deng Bol, the President of Jonglei Civil Society Network (JCSN) and Executive Director of INTREPID-South Sudan, said the order of the Jonglei state government for journalists to register violates the constitution and is a media censorship.

“In my humble opinion, this letter from Jonglei State’s Ministry of Information to the Media fraternity undermines the very Media Independence and Freedoms as enshrined in article 24 of the Transitional Constitution of the Republic of South Sudan,” Bol told Sudans Post from Bor.

“Besides, the Media houses and allied Media Personalities are being guided by other Laws derived from the ‘mother Law’, such as the Right to Access to Information Act, 2013 and regulated by the Media Authority, a body instituted by the ‘Laws of the Land’,” he added.

The activist warned that the call for journalists to register is a beginning for worse to come for journalists across the restive state.

“Legally, there is no need for the State Ministry in question to want to have Journalists rammed in a box. If this is allowed to pass, the subjects (Media Houses and Journalists) might be issued with ‘operation permits’ which the Ministry can revoke anytime they feel like it,” he warned.

“This is purely Media Censorship,” he asserted.

Activist Bol further said the media in Jonglei state had witnessed “suffering from intimidation, harassment, closure of Radio Station, detention by security organs – all this with the intention to silence the Media arena. This deliberate systemic shocking of the CIVIC SPACE should cease.”

“The Ministry should respect Media independency and withdraw this letter without condition. I am equally urging Media Houses and Journalists in the State to make an informed decision in this regard,” he concluded.



Land issues in South Sudan “Citizens must participate in decision making on matters related to their occupation or use of land.