On October 11, 2022 Somalia’s intelligence and
Security Agency (NISA) unlawfully and arbitrarily arrested Abdalle Ahmed
Mumin at Aden Adde International airport in Mogadishu, while traveling
to Nairobi. He was held against his will at the NISA detention, denying
access to his lawyers and family members. On 13 October 2022, NISA
transferred him to the CID, then the CID took him to court twice and
accusing him of: Article 219 – Bringing the Nation or the State
into contempt, Article 321- Instigation to disobey the laws and Article
505 – non-observance of orders of the authorities – of the Somali penal
code. The court granted him bail on October 16, 2022and said his
case will be heard within 45 days. On 18 October, 2022, Abdalle was
re-arrested by NISA and CID officers at the airport while traveling to
Nairobi for medical reasons. He was taken and detained at the CID. The
Benadir regional court revoked his bail on 19 October and ordered the
CID to remand him.
Abdalle developed severe kidney pain and severe allergies
that affected his eyes while in detention.
On October 12, 2022 Somalia’s ministry of information issued a misleading press statement claiming that Abdalle Ahmed Mumin is being held on security related
charges. A police charge sheet dated on 16 October stated that Abdalle
was arrested without court approval “For publicly disobeying government
directive and holding a press conference that criticized the directive.” In the charge sheet, “Abdalle insisted that he was right about expressing their concern about the impact the government’s directive could have the independent media”.
This shows a clear contradiction from what the ministry of
information said in its press release and shows Abdalle was solely targeted for
his media advocacy work.
Somali Journalists Syndicate (SJS), Somali Media Association
(SOMA and Somali Mechanism
for Safety of Journalists (SMSJ) condemn Somalia’s ministry of information’s wicked intentions in curtailing
the press freedom through intimidation, threats and arbitrary arrests
especially the group strongly condemn the deputy minister of Information
Abdirahman Yusuf Al-Adaala who is the lead oppressor of the press freedom and the
behind persecution of Abdalle Ahmed Mumin.
The group urged the deputy minister of information to desist from
aware that deputy minister of information Abdirahman Yusuf Al-Adaala and officials
from Villa Somalia are behind the persecution against Abdalle, they will be solely
held responsible. We call on Somalia’s international partners to impose targeted
sanctions against him and other individuals who are violating the rights of
journalists and media freedoms in the country.” Mohamed Ibrahim, President of
Somali Journalists Syndicate (SJS) said,
“Persecuting Abdalle for only raising his concerns about the
government directive shows the government’s cruel intentions to muscle
the press freedom and freedom of expression that might finally lead a
complete media black out, if the situation is not properly intervened by
the Somalia’s International partners”. Mr. Ibrahim added.
is also appalled by the government’s new tactics of singling out union leaders and press freedom advocates that
not only undermines the media freedoms, but also sends a frightening message to the ordinary
journalists. Such persecution is a direct violation to the federal constitution, the
regional and the international treaties on freedom of expression, which Somalia
is a member of and condemns these cruel acts.
“We are appalled by these new tactics by Ministry of information and
singling out policy aiming to threaten and intimidate the independent
media and the journalists and call for the government to respect the
freedom of expression which has been outlined in the federal
constitution and should be given the appropriate protection.” Mohamed
Osman Makaraan, Secretary general of Somali Media Association (SOMA) said. (END)