Latest detainment blow to media freedom

Well bloggers, the crack down continues, showing further signs of mass paranoia from the illegal junta. Sefafina, the Reporter who reported Charan Jeet Singh talking about Chodo being hand delivered his termination letter from Vore, which started our celebrations overthe weekend was taken into custody earlier today. SV asks if the report is true, then why take the Reporter? She is only the messenger and the person who should be taken into custody is Charan Jeet Singh. If he was making false allegations against Chodo, then he should be taken to task.

The Police have really shown their true colours instead of going after the person who made the statement, goes after the messenger to intimidate the media from reporting truths about the illegal junta’s actions. BTW, it took 8 tough Policeman to apprehend 1 woman armed with a ‘pen.’ The ‘pen’ is indeed mightier than the ‘gun.’ We at the SV Team will continue freedom blogging and are grateful to all the freedom bloggers for continuing to blog and keep their accountable. Keep reporting Serafina and we will keep blogging!!

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Update: 4:55PM

Fiji Media Council chairman Daryle Tarte has labelled the detainment of Fiji Times reporter Serafina Silaitoga as another blow to media freedom. It is very disturbing that after the interim Prime Minister has given the nation an undertaking that he upholds media freedom in Fiji journalists continue to be taken in for questioning by the police, he said.  The latest incident when Ms Silaitogo was arrested by the Labasa police and questioned about an article regarding the interim Finance Minister is another blow to freedom of journalists to go about their work without the threat of police intimidation.

Individuals have a right to express opinions and the media has the responsibility to inform the public about such opinions provided of course they are within the bounds of the code of ethics and practice. Eight police officers early this morning visited Ms Silaitoga at her residence, taking her into custody for questioning over the article that was published in yesterdays Fiji Times.

Ms Silaitoga refused to provide a statement to police unless her legal representative was present with her while she was in custody. She was released at around midday today by Labasa Police. Police spokesperson Ema Mua denied that the directive was given by Police Commissioner Commodore Esala Teleni, despite Labasa Police officers claiming the directive came from their superiors.

17 Responses to “Latest detainment blow to media freedom”

  1. mediawatcher Says:

    The story is absolutely true – Mahend was served the letter and is trying to find a way out to avoid shame

  2. painter Says:

    What does 8 police officers who go to arrest a defenceless, pregnant woman, on an early Sunday morning, from the safety of her home and family, tell the WORLD about Fiji’s military junta..??!!!!

    Good on you Ms Silaitoga for zipping up until you have your lawyer with you! And code of ethics and practice my foot! Everyone should be outraged by this ongoing violation of human rights, the suppression of media freedoms and the torture and abuse detainees suffer at the hands of these terrorists in power.

    Indeed SV, the pen is mightier than their guns and its becoming glaring clear that the desperate military junta are losing the propaganda war over the hearts and minds of our people, hence, this shameless resorting to heavy-handed tactics against the very people they took an oath to protect! This dark phase in our history will never be forgotten.

  3. painter Says:

    Btw SV – i disagree with you, no one should be be taken into custody, not Ms. Silaitoga nor Mr. Charan Jeet Singh. The only person who should hve been arrested is Fiji’s infamous SERIAL LIAR Mahendra Chaudry! And note that Ema Mua, you’re not far off from him either! Someone get the low-down on this unqualified police mouthpiece!

  4. Fox Shadow Says:

    It’s about time and long, long overdue. The sad thing is he has already done so much damage to Fiji. What good has he done for Fiji as a whole?

    It is a pity he was not fired in the truest sense of the word.

  5. Mark Manning Says:

    So now the brave Fiji police are showing their cowardice by picking on innocent pregnant native Fijian women and threatening them , and in front of her children !
    Pathetic boces !
    Is this Fiji or pre war Germany ?

  6. Linus Says:

    Have you read this on FBCL: – I must monder if it is the truth or a “frame up” to cover some other violent act by the Boci’s.

    Lawyer escapes from custody
    Sunday, August 10, 2008

    Taken from / By: FBCL
    Police spokeswoman Ema Mua says Suva Lawyer Savenaca Komaisavai who was being interrogated by the Police has escaped from their custody.

    Mua says Police were transferring Komaisavai from the Valelevu Police Station to the Nasinu Police Station when he escaped.

    She says the Police are now seeking help from Komaisavai’s brother to try and locate him.

    Komaisavai was arrested yesterday after police found a bench warrant against him.

  7. LUVfiji Says:

    Defeat is crouching at their doorstep!

    The end draws nigh..

  8. Peace Pipe Says:

    The ig is tripping all over themselves in their attempt to stifle opposition to their devious moves. So who by the way lodged the complaint or certified that the comments made these individuals are seditious. This is indeed sad and is a sign of dictatorship or a military state in action. Mr Beddoes aptly labelled the police as bullies for this sad episode.

    OMG are we entering another phase of suppression of the rights of the people. This is a show of intimidation by the authorities or more accurately by the ig to force us into towing the line and accept whatever they dish out or else suffer the consequence. Its like a forewarning for people to accept the charter farter or else. But I am afraid they got it all wrong. We shall not be moved – by the ig.

  9. Tui Says:

    Tu Save did not escape. He was assisted by some of the police officers who were supposed to be “minding” him. The pig must know that a growing number of police officers are getting frustrated with the military and are willing too go against their superiors for the sake of this country.

  10. Wailei Says:

    @painter, Ema Mua has no qualifications in anything, She was a stay home mum,unemployed in Raiwaqa. Than went to work in FBCL, than was chosen by the military to join them. Now a Police spokeswoman but works for the military. She comes from a very poor/good family. I always wonder why she took up such a position. Well, that is her choice.

  11. Wailei Says:

    OH yeah, She is also quite intelligent.

  12. talanoa Says:

    Ema Mua must be sleeping with either kete poka Teleni or Bainivore….thats how she got her spokeswomean job..???

  13. Striker Says:

    Speaking of the intelligence of some people reminds me of the nursery rhyme:
    “Boom, boom, ain’t it great to be crazy?
    Giddy and foolish all day long”

  14. Global Voices Online » Fiji Times reporter arrested Says:

    […] police for writing about an article which offended a government minsiter. Soli Vakasama from Fiji notes how eight tough policemen apprehended a journalist armed with only a pen. Posted by Mong […]

  15. Talei Says:

    I have to disagree with Mick – these police officers do NOT have a brain. They are getting desperate and are indeed tripping over themselves.

  16. FijiGirl Says:

    I guess the motto has changed from ‘to protect and serve’ to ‘to bully whoever we can’.

    Good girl for calling your boss and letting your lawyers do the talking.

    Time for the courts to show their true colours and stand with either the Rule of Law or their military masters.

    God bless Fiji

  17. painter Says:

    Thanks Wailei! What a pity… for real intelligence coupled with common sense and a strong moral compass would have no one touching that post with a 10ft pole! I’m certain there are enough trained and capable police officers within the force who could hve easily taken up that post BUT FOR the illegalities they would be ‘forced’ to cover up for the PIG. Its almost an impossible position to be in and so i think one has got to be much more than just desperate to take up that post.

    Ema Mua is nothing but an over-ambitious, desperate for her 15mins of fame, a dangerously loose canon and a lazy, lousy liar whom I wouldn’t put Talanoa’s suspicion past!

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