Efforts by journalists in Mali to find their missing colleague have received a major boost with the Prime Minister, Modibo Keita, ordering two ministries to get involved and ensure that the journalist is found.
On January 29, 2016, Birama Touré, a reporter with the investigative weekly, Le Sphinx, reportedly went to visit his extended family in a suburb of the Malian capital, Bamako. At about 7pm, he left his family house for his residence at Sébènikoro, also in Bamako but has not been heard from nor seen since then, and frantic efforts are ongoing to find him.
To demonstrate its support for the search effort, the Prime Minister has ordered the Ministries of Interior and of Communication to get involved and ensure the success of the search mission.
“We are well mobilised for now. The Prime Minister has instructed two of his ministries to do everything possible to find our colleague. Every day, we make contact with the authorities to assess the progress of the search effort,” Dramane Aliou Koné president of media development organisation la Maison de la presse (MP), told his colleagues at a press conference on February 17th 2016.
MP, which is MFWA’s national partner in Mali, organized the press conference attended by over one hundred media personnel, and a subsequent brainstorming exercise in a bid to intensify and coordinate efforts to find the missing journalist.
Koné said a supporting committee has been created to sustain the sensitisation campaign by publishing regular reports and information on the matter. He also indicated that the MP has secured the services of a lawyer to handle all the legal aspects of the case.
The journalists resolved to maintain the matter of their colleague’s disappearance constantly in the headlines and help intensify the search for him.
A banner alerting the public about the disappearance of Toure was also distributed by the MP as part of the campaign to find the missing journalist.