24 September 2012
(MFWA/IFEX) – 24 September 2012 – On 17 September, 2012, Côte d’Ivoire’s statutory press regulatory body – The National Press Council (CNP) – lifted suspension sanctions it had imposed on six privately-owned pro-Gbagbo newspapers. The suspensions had been put in place after the media outlets jointly republished an article that was originally published by Notre Voie, also a pro-Gbagbo daily.
On 7 September, the CNP rebuked and suspended Notre Voie, after six of its publications published photographs of key figures from the former regime alongside captions reading “Minister.” The CNP said these captions create the impression of “the existence of two governments in Cote d’Ivoire.”
On 12 September, the CNP suspended Le Nouveau Courrier, LG Info, Le Temps, Aujourd’hui and Le Quotidien d’Abidjan for six publications each. Meanwhile, L’Alternative was suspended for 12 publications, for knowingly reproducing the article, thus reinforcing the notion of “existence of two governments in Cote d’Ivoire.”
The Media Foundation for West Africa’s (MFWA) correspondent reported that the regulatory body’s decision to lift the suspensions follows the newspapers’ plans to lodge a complaint against the CNP at the country’s Supreme Court.
According to the correspondent, after several mediation efforts by the Newspaper Publishers’ Association of Cote d’Ivoire (GEPCI) and the Dialogue, Truth and Reconciliation Commission (CDVR), the CNP finally decided to suspend the measure taken against the newspapers.