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Ban on Radio Barawe a gross violation of human rights-FESOJ

Storyline:National News

The order by South West authorities banning Radio Barawe from using the area dialect in its broadcasts amount to direct censorship and violation of a community to profess and enjoy its own language, the Federation of Somalia Journalist (FESOJ) has said calling for the withdrawal of the order.

Barawe town deputy commissioner Abdikarim Sheikh Ali reprimanded the station during an interview this week  to stop broadcasting using the Chemini/Af-Barawani dialect adding the failure with result in ‘severe consequences.’

According to FESOJ which spoke with local authorities, the order came from South State Ministry of Information which argued that only the official dialects-May and Mahaa-tiri in addition to Arabic were the only official dialects in Somalia.

“The decision to ban journalists from using their local dialect violates with international norms, and we call on S/West state authorities to reintroduce and allow journalists to resume the Chemini dialect which most of the people in Baraawe can understand and enjoy “Mohamed Ibrahim Moalimuu FESOJ Secretary-General said


Moalimu said the order also violated rights of ethnic minorities which are protected by Article 27 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights 1966. “In those States in which ethnic, religious or linguistic minorities exist, persons belonging to such minorities shall not be denied the right, in community with the other members of their group, to enjoy their own culture, to profess and practice their own religion, or to use their own language,’ the article reads.

FESOJ noted the order could also adversely affect the local communities which depend on the radio for information regarding the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

FESOJ also called for the release of VOA reporter Mukhtar Mohamed Atosh who was arrested by police on Monday evening for what they called wrongfully reporting on a rape case in the Bay region.

The reporter was detained in the eastern police station of Adaadda neighborhood in Baidoa where FESOJ Deputy President Muhidin Husni has visited him today to see his condition and work the quick release of the detained journalist.