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Parliament told to stop censoring media

Author: Alhadi Hawari | Published: Wednesday, May 29, 2024

National parliament building, Juba South Sudan. | File photo.

The President of the Union of Journalists of South Sudan has urged spokesperson of the national parliament to allow media practitioners to report freely.

Patrick Oyot is reacting to lawmaker Oliver Mori Benjamin who issued a warning to journalists and media outlets on Monday not to report an MP’s statement criticizing the exorbitant SPLM rally on Saturday.

MP Joseph Malual’s denounced the recent endorsement of Salva Kiir’s candidature for the December 2024 elections over the economic hardship faced by the citizens.

UJoSS President said journalists should be free to report what they deem is the public interest.

“Anything that has been said  out already cannot be hidden and journalists should not be stopped from reporting. If you don’t want us to report don’t say, but if you talk we will report.

“So whatever they say if we see that it’s in the interest of the public we are free to publish that information,” he said.

Oyet is considering meeting the spokesperson of the National parliament over the matter.

” So, we are planning to get time  and meet with the spokesperson of parliament because as journalists, we are supposed to be free to report.

Last month, security personnel in parliament censored journalists to prevent them from reporting a statement by an MP who questioned the parliament’s silence on the country’s economic hardships.

The MP, who is part of the South Sudan Opposition Alliance, warned that if the parliament continued to ignore the economic situation, protests would ensue.

He was later compelled to withdraw his statement under pressure from the majority.

Additionally, a day later, another MP informed the house that the MP who made the statement was investigated by security on the same day.

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