Lesotho Slammed for Shutting Down 'Anti-Govt' Radio Station - Report

22 September 2017

Lesotho's government has reportedly defended its decision to shut down a privately owned radio station that is seen as being anti-government.

According to SABC, the government said that its decision was "solely" based on the country's fragile security situation.

Minister of Communications, Science and Technology, Joang Molapo said that the government had no interest in censoring the media, but it was going to take action if the country's security was being threatened.

Molapo was quoted as saying that the authorities had pointed out the "issues and actions" which they "considered as a threat to the security of the country" and had asked the chief Editor of Moafrika FM, Candy Ramainoane to avoid those issues, especially when they were untrue.

"It is one thing for us to defend a truthful interpretation of events, but when somebody presents something completely false, that is so sensational, that is going to cause distress in the general population with the situation in the country, then we have to take an action and put things right," Molapo was quoted as saying.

Right groups that included Amnesty International issued strong statements that allegations on Moafrika were "spurious and nothing more than a witch-hunt aimed at harassing and intimidating the country's press".

The rights group said: "Ramainoane must be released immediately and unconditionally and be allowed to do his job. MoAfrika FM should also be re-opened immediately."

TMG Live.TV reported that Ramainoane was arrested after his radio station was taken off air for "inciting violence and fueling hatred".

Source: News24

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