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Dismissed state TV journalist arrested, charged

(MFWA/IFEX) - A journalist who petitioned President Yahya Jammeh over his wrongful dismissal from the government-controlled, state-owned Gambia Radio and Television Services (GRTS) in 2006 was on 16 March 2011 arrested and detained by the Gambian police over his petition.

Media Foundation for West Africa's (MFWA) sources reported that Dodou Sanneh was illegally detained for three days at the police headquarters in Banjul, the capital. On 16 May, he was arraigned before the Banjul Magistrates' Court presided by Manyima Bojang and charged with "giving false information to a public officer". The case had since been adjourned on two occasions and was scheduled to go forward on 6 June.

In 2006, Sanneh was dismissed from the GRTS over alleged biased reporting after covering the election campaigns of the opposition United Democratic Party (UDP), National Reconciliation Party (NRP) and Gambia People's Democratic Party Alliance.

Sources said that prior to his petitioning President Jammeh on 7 March 2011, Sanneh had pursued his case at the office of the country's Ombudsman for four years without success.

This is not the first time Sanneh has been arrested. On 8 September 2006, he was arrested and detained at a secret location by the National Intelligence Agency (NIA) over this same issue. Sanneh was later released and relieved of his duties. He was later reinstated, but on 20 November 2006 he was again dismissed by the management, which offered no explanation.

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    (MFWA/IFEX) - Dodou Sanneh, a journalist working with the public broadcaster Gambia Radio and Television Services (GRTS), was sacked on 20 November 2006 by the management, which offered no explanation for his dismissal.

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