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PROLONGED DETENTION: Bujakera Still Detained & His Only Crime Is Practicing His Profession

Today, Friday 22nd September 2023 marks two weeks since the Congolese authorities arrested journalist Stanis Bujakera and he still remains in detention with not apparent reason as to why he cannot be afforded his due right to bail before undergoing trial.

Bujakera is facing charges including publication of false information relating to the case of the assassination of former Transport Minister and opposition Ensemble Pour la Republique leader Moïse Katumbi’s spokesperson Cherubin Okende.

Transferred to Makala Central Prison last week, Bujakera was placed on a 15 day “provisional arrest” with his lawyers submitting an appeal against the prosecutors decision.

The authorities are yet to respond to the appeal by Bujakera’s defense counsel and continue keeping him in detention for no constitutional reason.

Requests and demands for the unconditional release of Bujakera continue to trickle in from different organizations including international human rights NGOs, civil society groups among others.

Renowned Senegalese human rights activist Alioune Tine has added his voice to the growing calls for release Bujakera who he says has done nothing against law but simply practicing his profession and his respect for the rules of professional conduct and ethics.

“His detention is arbitrary and violates international human rights obligations and respect for press freedom in the DRC. We express our indignation at this arrest and detention. This journalist’s only crime is is its professionalism, its respect for the rules of professional conduct and ethics of the press. It is even serious, in Africa today in the middle of the 21st century, that journalists who do their work correctly can be arrested and detained for reasons completely arbitrary. We demand that Stanis Bujakera Tshiamala be released and handed over to his editorial staff,” pleaded Alioune Tine in a message sent to ACTUALITE.CD .

Journalist Stanis Bujakera has been accused in particular of spreading false information and disseminating a document attributed to the National Intelligence Agency (ANR) following the publication of an article on the Jeune Afrique website, an article of which he is not the author.

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