Guinea: Djoma TV Faces Blackout as Regulatory Authority Cites National Security Concerns

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In Guinea, channel 244 on the Canal Plus bouquet now displays a black screen. Since the evening of December 6, it has been impossible to tune in to Djoma TV broadcasts. This decision was made by the High Authority for Communication (HAC), the media regulatory body.

The president of HAC cites reasons of “national security” in a letter addressed to the Canal Plus group, justifying the “immediate and until further notice” removal of Djoma Radio and TV from its bouquet. Despite criticism, Boubacar Yacine Diallo stands by the decision.

Speaking on the Espace channel, the president of the High Authority for Communication confirmed the authenticity of the letter sent to the Canal Plus group. He claimed to have been contacted “by competent authorities” who drew his attention to “the dangers that could threaten national security.” “In an extraordinary plenary session, a provisional measure” was therefore adopted, he explained.

Applying the law

Without specifying who these “competent authorities” are and what exact threat was posed to the Guinean state, Boubacar Yacine Diallo claims to have simply applied the law. The letter has sparked numerous criticisms, particularly on social media, from Guineans and journalists in the country who denounce an infringement on press freedom.

Internationally, Reporters Without Borders (RSF) released a statement calling on the Canal Plus management to explain the shutdown of Djoma. The group, in turn, announced legal proceedings against its broadcaster. This incident comes as, for the past two weeks, several radios have reported jamming of their waves. Unions and press associations are preparing to launch various actions to demand that the authorities respect press freedom. Boubacar Yacine Diallo has not responded to our interview requests.

Soukaina Sghir

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