Cote d’Ivoire ALERT: Clampdown on journalists intensified

Patrice Pohe, journalist and a communication adviser of Raymond Tchimou, the state prosecutor, was arrested and detained on the orders of his boss for allegedly leaking a report about an embezzlement which had gone on in the cocoa and coffee sector of the country to the privately-owned Le Nouveau Courrier newspaper.

Pohe’s arrest followed a long grilling session with Allan Alliali, managing editor of privately-owned Le Quotidien newspaper.

The two were interrogated separately before going through another face-to-face session for nearly nine hours. Pohe was on July 17, interrogated together with Boni Rosine, secretary to the state prosecutor for about six hours. Pohe was expected to appear in court on July 23.

In another development, the Plateau Court in Abidjan, capital of Cote d’Ivoire trying three detained editors of Le Nouveau Courrier, on July 23, adjourned the case to July 26 without reason.

The Ivorian police scuttled a picket by the Ivorian Committee for Protection of Journalists (CIPJ) to protest the clamp down on journalists in the country. The police seized a camera and two cellular phones from the journalists and later returned the equipment to them.

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