Somaliland Journalists: New Media Law Ends Freedom of Press in Somaliland

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SOLJA claims the new law contradicts Somaliland's constitutionBy: Staff Writer

HARGEISA (Somalilandsun) – The Somaliland Journalists Association (SOLJA) is worried that the recently passed law for the National Intelligence Agency by the two houses of the Somaliland parliament may have a negative impact on the freedom of Somaliland’s independent media.

In a statement released on November 6, 2012,SOLJA calls on Somaliland president Ahmed Mohamed Mohamoud Silanyo to amend article 7 paragraph 11 of the new law, which states that NIA has the right to censor the media equipments. SOlJA’s Chairman Hassan Mohamed Yusuf believes that this will give a chance the NIA to censor the independent media, which is opposite to the Somaliland national constitution as well as the Somaliland press law, which the president promised to implement during his campaign in the election in 2010.

SOLA also claims that more than 100,000 Somalilanders have lost their lives to have a freedom of speech and self determination. ”If the president of Somaliland signs this law accepting the censorship, he will be remembered the man who burried the freedom of speech after twenty years of independence.”

SOLAJA calls on countries friendly to Somaliland, as well as human rights organizations in the world, and independent media watch dog organizations to encourage the president of Somaliland to amend this law of censorship.

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