Democratic Republic Of Congo Withdraws Broadcasting Rights Of Radio France Internationale Correspondent
The Congolese Minister of Communications, Lambert Mende announced that the Congolese authorities had revoked the broadcasting rights of a Radio France Internationale (RFI) correspondent in Kinshasa. The state has also prohibited the French radio station from broadcasting in the country.
RFI has requested that this decision be withdrawn, but Mende said that a further course of action is still being looked into.
These developments are unfolding at a pivotal time in the election process in the RDC, between the recent elections and the upcoming announcement of the provisional election results on 6 January at the latest.
RFI has provided detailed coverage of the elections in the RDC. The station is the country’s largest French-language radio station and is extremely popular with listeners in the state.
RFI’s “Global Radio” management issued a statement saying that the radio platform regrets that its Kinshasa correspondent, Florence Morice had her broadcasting rights withdrawn because, in their opinion, she was only doing her job as an experienced journalist.
RFI added that Radio France Internationale fully backs its correspondent Florence Morice, and is demanding that the broadcasting rights withdrawal measure be cancelled, and also for the station broadcasting to be re-established in RDC.
RDC’s Minister of Communications told the Agence France Presse agency that he had received the arguments presented by the RFI and that the committee would look into them.
Mende said that if the RFI’s points are found to be valid, the government would be accommodating. He did also state that if the arguments were not valid, the measure would still stand.
Mende had criticised RFI’s correspondent of violating the regulations around the National Independent Electoral Commission and of not complying with the Code of Conduct for Foreign Journalists During Elections.
Mr Mende said that the RFI had announced electoral results and trends, while the President of the Electoral Commission is the only person with the mandate to make such announcements.
He added that RFI’s radio signal had been cut off in all areas in the Congo because the government was not going to allow a station to add fuel to the flames when it came to ensuring a smooth election process.
Credit: This article originated from www.brusselstimes.com