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Radio station manager held for broadcasting controversial song

(JED/IFEX) - Kinshasa, 7 May 2010 - JED denounces the arrest and detention since 3 May 2010 of a community radio manager from a station broadcasting in Moanda. Etienne Maluka was arrested by intelligence officers in Matadi, capital of Lower Congo province. JED calls for the immediate release of Maluka, who is being held for broadcasting a Portuguese-language song of a Cabindan independence group, on the grounds that it criticises the Angolan president and praises the merits of their leader, Nzita Henriques Tiago.

According to the information obtained by JED, Maluka, better known as "Mike Elima", is a student who also manages the RCM station. According to the National Intelligence Agency (ANR), the song is insulting to José Eduardo dos Santos, the Angolan head of state. Maluka was held for two days in the local offices of the ANR before being transferred by plane to Matadi on 5 May.

The complaint against Maluka was filed with the Congolese authorities by the Angolan consul in Moanda. When interviewed by JED, Ousmane Kaludji, Maluka's colleague, said that "Maluka was unaware of the meaning of the song's lyrics and was mainly interested in its beat."

Following the arrest, Makuka's fellow students at the Institut Supérieur de Navigation et Pêche (ISNP) protested in the streets of Moanda on 5 May.

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