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DRC: Radio Okapi suspended by the government

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  • DRC: Radio Okapi suspended by the government

    Hat-tip Pathfinder.

    DRC: Higher Audiovisual Council suspends Radio Okapi
    published 8 hours ago, 44 ​​minutes | Last update December 2nd, 2012 at 6:05 | under News, News, Kinshasa, The One. Keywords: CSAC, Media, Radio Okapi

    From left to right, Vice President of CSAC, Alain Nkoy and the President of CSAC, Abbot Jean Bosco Bahala OKW 'Ibale during a press conference in Kinshasa on 28/09/2011. Radio Okapi / Dr. John BompengoVoir in PicasaDe left to right, Vice President of CSAC, Alain Nkoy and the President of CSAC, Abbot Jean Bosco Bahala OKW 'Ibale during a press conference in Kinshasa on 28/09/2011 . Radio Okapi / Dr. John Bompengo
    Radio Okapi no longer issues in Kinshasa on Saturday 1st December in the afternoon, on the decision of the Superior Council of Audiovisual Congo (CSAC), regulator of the press in the DRC. The station has not received any notification of this decision. According to a statement from the Congolese Association for access to justice (CALA), citing a technical read on state television, criticized the CSAC Radio Okapi "of having broadcast Friday, November 23 at two o'clock morning, during the broadcast to listeners Word, procedures involving non-respect for authority and established institutions, lack of restraint, calling for insurrection and bias. "
    Interviewed by RFI, the President of CSAC, Jean Bosco Bahala, stated that Radio Okapi was suspended for administrative reasons and not because of the interview last Thursday by the chain M23 political leader, Jean-Marie Runiga.

    "We asked them not to give voice to the M23 rebels who are considered terrorists. But that is not the problem. For us, the problem is primarily administrative. They bring their notebook support, we will reopen the radio, "he said.

    To believe RFI, the boss of the CSAC warned that Radio Okapi is summoned to "regularize their situation by Tuesday or it will face new sanctions."

    In a statement released Sunday, December 2nd, the UN Mission in the DRC has expressed "disappointment" following the decision of the CSAC.

    "The decision is particularly unwelcome given the difficult and delicate situation prevailing in North Kivu," said the head of MONUSCO, Roger Meece.

    "Radio Okapi broadcasts critical information such as the population calls for calm by religious leaders, statements relating to the introduction of a curfew by the provincial authorities and many others. I find the timing of this decision and the lack of notification disturbing and regrettable, "he added.

    The statement reveals that the suspension was never notified or Radio Okapi nor MONUSCO.

    But according to a document of the UN mission that CSAC has managed to obtain a copy of the CSAC justified its decision by refusing to Radio Okapi to submit its program schedule.

    "Considering the seriousness of the security situation in Goma, emphasizes communicates MONUSCO, the Special Representative of the Secretary General of the UN has decided to authorize the use of alternative routes to allow, even intermittently, the further dissemination programs of Radio Okapi in North Kivu. "

    The spokesman for MONUSCO, Madnodje Mounoubai, said he was surprised by the decision of the CSAC, indicating that this decision is unwelcome to the events in Eastern DRC marked by rebellion M23 which, after occupied the town of Goma ten days, was released on Saturday.

    "The public relies heavily on Radio Okapi for information. Since the entry of the M23 in the city of Goma, the signals of all radios were cut with the exception of the TRNC and Radio Okapi. RTNC has become the way of propaganda M23, the population does not have the opportunity to have different story if it is Radio Okapi. And if Radio Okapi also had become silent, it means that we abandon the population of North Kivu in the dark with regard to access to information, "he said.

    Listen explanations spokesman MONUSCO.

    Radio Okapi is a media UN in partnership with Fondation Hirondelle. It emits in the DRC since 2002.

  • #2
    Re: DRC: Radio Okapi suspended by the government

    Not good. Radio Okapi is the best source in the DRC for reporting Ebola, Marburg, and other health threats. Whatever political or military benefit is gained by suspending it is far outwieghed by the loss of critical health information.

    It is not clear from the article above whether Radio Okapi will not be publishing at all, or whether it will simply not be broadcast in certain areas, but either way, its suspension poses a health risk at least locally.


    • #3
      Re: DRC: Radio Okapi suspended by the government

      Reporters Without Borders

      RSF and JED deplore jamming of UN radio on orders of media regulator

      Published on Monday 3 December 2012.

      Reporters Without Borders and its Congolese partner Journalist in Danger (JED) are deeply concerned about an order issued on 1 December by the High Council for Broadcasting and Communication (CSAC) to jam Radio Okapi.

      The station, run by the United Nations for the past 10 years, broadcasts throughout the Democratic Republic of Congo. It was ordered off the air for four days and could suffer more severe penalties unless it complies with the demands of the CSAC.

      Contacted by JED on Monday, the council’s chairman, Jean Bosco Baala, said Radio Okapi was under fire for failing to submit its programme schedule to the media watchdog.

      “The head of public information for MONUSCO (UN Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of Congo) rejected the request from the CSAC on the grounds that Radio Okapi benefits from certain privileges and immunities which mean it is not obliged to lodge its programme schedule with the CSAC,” the council ruling stated.

      JED considers the failure to submit the programme schedule is not sufficient justification by itself for such a decision that adversely affects millions of people for whom the station is the only source of information.

      Reporters Without Borders said: “While the humanitarian and security situation in Nord-Kivu is a matter of concern for the international community as a whole, the suspension of Radio Okapi deprives the population of vital information and adds to the feeling of insecurity.”

      Read more...,43749.html
      "Safety and security don't just happen, they are the result of collective consensus and public investment. We owe our children, the most vulnerable citizens in our society, a life free of violence and fear."
      -Nelson Mandela