Sierra Leone ALERT: SLAJ to sue opposition politician over attacks on two newspaper journalists

The Sierra Leonean Association of Journalists (SLAJ) at an extraordinary general meeting on February 24, 2011 resolved to institute legal action against an opposition presidential aspirant, who allegedly masterminded attacks on two journalists with the Awareness Times, a privately-owned Freetown-based newspaper.

The Media Foundation for West Africa (MFWA)’s correspondent reported that the resolution followed recommendations by a Committee set up to investigate attacks on Abdul Karim Kabia, and James Bampia Bundu, acting editor and reporter respectively of the newspaper in late December 2010.

The correspondent said SLAJ is seeking legal advice and would soon bring court action against Julius Maada , presidential aspirant of the opposition Sierra Leone People’s Party (SLPP) and his supporters who attacked the two journalists.

In a complaint to SLAJ, Kabia said that he has been receiving constant threats on his life after Bio threatened on December 7, 2010 over article he(Maada Bio )deemed critical. The editor added that, “continuing publishing articles on Maada Bio and his supporters would put my life on the line”.

In the case of Bampia, he complained that on December 22, 2010 he was attacked at the premises of a Freetown court by a supporter of Maada Bio, who was identified as Foday Yansanneh .

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