Mozambique: Arrest of Journalist Wilson Defies Press Freedom

The recent arrest of a journalist by Mozambican police while she was covering a demonstration is a blatant violation of press freedom and a disturbing attack on the fundamental principles of democracy.

Development Diaries reports that journalist and human rights defender, Sheila Wilson, was covering a demonstration outside the premises of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) when she was taken away by the police.

Also, it was gathered that journalists from Soico Television (STV), who were also covering the demonstration, were physically attacked, allegedly by the police, and had their film camera seized when they were interviewing Mozambican Police spokesperson, Leonel Muchina.

The arrest of Sheila and the confiscation of the film camera from STV speak to the unacceptable treatment that journalists face in Mozambique.

Journalists play a critical role in society by providing accurate information, holding authorities accountable, and ensuring the public’s right to know.

Silencing a journalist in the line of duty not only undermines these democratic values but also sets a dangerous precedent that threatens the freedom and safety of all media practitioners in Mozambique.

Such actions are unacceptable and must be unequivocally condemned.

Furthermore, the arrest of this journalist during a demonstration highlights a troubling trend of escalating hostility towards media workers and civil liberties in Mozambique.

The Mozambican authorities are sending a clear message of intolerance towards dissent and freedom of expression.

Mozambique is ranked 1o5 out of 180 in the Reporters Without Borders (RSF) 2024 press freedom index.

Development Diaries calls on the Mozambican government to immediately release the detained journalist and take concrete steps to protect press freedom and the rights of journalists.

Photo source: Amnesty International


About the Author