This platform is an initiative of five Congolese civil society organisations: the Congolese Association for Access to Justice (ACAJ), Action for Transparent and Peaceful Elections (AETA), Filimbi, Congolais Débout, and Fight for Change (Lucha).

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Condition # 3: reopening of all private media

Flickr/Kmeron

-> The reopening of private media previously shut down and fair access to public media

The 31 December 2016 agreement focuses on two aspects of media issues: the issue of media shut down by the authorities and fair access to all state media.

In its policy of widespread repression, the government shut down press groups (radio, television, newspapers) perceived as being connected to the political opposition or belonging to certain opposition parties. In addition, public radio and television are still serving the regime: the opposition does not have fair access to them.

So far, no action has been taken to provide fair access for all to public media. On the contrary, the regime continues to use public media mostly to defend its interests. Pro-opposition or independent media are suspended or prevented from functioning. The following cases are noteworthy:

  • Radio Nyota TV and Radio-television Mapendo, belonging to Moïse Katumbi;
  • Radio-television Lubumbashi (RTLJ), belonging to Jean-Claude Muyambo;
  • Radio-television Grands Lacs Sud Kivu, belonging to an MP;
  • Television Salama in Bunia in Ituri province, supporting Pierre Lumbi;
  • Radio La Voix du Katanga, belonging to Antoine Gabriel Kyungu;
  • Radio Owoto, belonging to Christophe Lutundula.

There are also cases of journalists having been arrested, imprisoned, tortured or threatened while exercising their professions. The NGO Journaliste en Danger (JED) has listed 121 cases of attacks against the media in 2017.

Because of the elections being held this year and the climate of terror that the regime is exerting against the opposition, the media and the citizens, the future stands to become increasingly oppressive for news professionals as December draws near.

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