Home | News    Tuesday 10 September 2013

Print media in Sudan facing serious challenges

separation
increase
decrease
separation
separation

September 9, 2013 (KHARTOUM) - Newspapers in Sudan are facing a major crisis due to the sharp decline in selling rates and heavy government censorship controls.

JPEG - 25.3 kb
A Sudanese man reads a newspaper as he waits to pay at a kiosk in the capital Khartoum (AFP)

The growing pressures facing print media in the country, coupled with the lack of paid advertisements has forced newspapers to layoff large numbers of journalists.

In a country inhabited by 33 million people, various types of newspapers including political, sports and arts sell a combined total of less than 500,000 copies daily.

More than 30 sports and political newspapers are published every day in Sudan’s capital, Khartoum; however, their reach remains limited and does not extend to the peripheral regions of the country due to poor infrastructure and the lack of effective distribution companies.

Furthermore, the government imposes high fees on printing and imported paper, with significant efforts exerted by publishers over the years failing to convince authorities to reduce the fees.

Sudanese authorities routinely confiscate newspapers which publish material critical of the government, army, police or security forces. Several newspapers have suffered heavy financial losses during 2013 due to repeated suspension and confiscation.

The majority of journalists in Sudan suffer from harsh living conditions due to high inflation rates and low monthly salaries of less than $100, as well as facing continuous harassment from authorities when reporting on issues of a sensitive nature.

“I earn a monthly salary of less than $120 which doesn’t suffice for a daily single meal; however, I am forced to continue working until we see a radical political and economic change”, one journalist, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said.

“We come here to do away with our worries, eat breakfast and drink tea and coffee, newspapers have become repellent and they are controlled by opportunists who are cajoling authorities to serve their own personal interests”, he added.

Earlier this year, the government acquired major shares in two independent newspapers, Al-Sahafa and Al-Khartoum following repeated harassment which forced their publishers to sell off a significant amount of their shares, leading the anti-government Sudanese journalists’ network to describe the move as the “marriage of the fourth estate to the executive power”.

The strict control mean it has become increasingly difficult for newspapers to publish news articles and reports which criticise the political and economic situation in the country as chief editors continue to heavily exercise self-censorship in order to avoid confiscation and suspension.

The editor-in-chief of one independent newspaper said that recovery of the print newspaper industry from its “terrible deterioration” is conditional upon political change which brings about a democratic government that respects press freedom.

The manager of a newspapers ads office said that distribution has fallen below 50% due to price increases, pointing out that some newspapers which used to sell 55,000 copies are currently only selling 30,000.

(ST)

Comments on the Sudan Tribune website must abide by the following rules. Contravention of these rules will lead to the user losing their Sudan Tribune account with immediate effect.

- No inciting violence
- No inappropriate or offensive language
- No racism, tribalism or sectarianism
- No inappropriate or derogatory remarks
- No deviation from the topic of the article
- No advertising, spamming or links
- No incomprehensible comments

Due to the unprecedented amount of racist and offensive language on the site, Sudan Tribune tries to vet all comments on the site.

There is now also a limit of 400 words per comment. If you want to express yourself in more detail than this allows, please e-mail your comment as an article to comment@sudantribune.com

Kind regards,

The Sudan Tribune editorial team.

Comment on this article



The following ads are provided by Google. SudanTribune has no authority on it.



Sudan Tribune

Promote your Page too

Latest Comments & Analysis


Sudan’s Constitutional Declaration was reduced to absurdity 2019-08-13 20:31:25 By Mahmoud A. Suleiman After paying tributes to the martyrs and hoping healing for wounded and offer sincere greetings to the rebellious Sudanese people who are inevitably victorious, having (...)

Options and opportunities for SPLM-N al-Hilu to join Sudan’s transition 2019-08-13 20:06:06 By Ibrahim B. Musa Despite the initial signing of the political on July, 17th, 2019 and constitutional declaration on August 4th, 2019, as well as the previous exhausting efforts made in (...)

Can Sudan achieve peace and democratic transition? 2019-08-13 07:37:28 By Rosalind Marsden Sudan has a unique opportunity to embrace democratic transition but there is no room for complacency. Comprehensive reforms and a united democratic front will be key to (...)


MORE






Latest Press Releases


Sudanese lawyers and Human rights defenders back calls for civil rule 2019-04-26 10:22:06 Press statement by 55 Sudanese lawyers and Human rights defenders on Sudan Sit-in and Peaceful Protest Khartoum -24/04/2019 We, the undersigned (55) Sudanese lawyers and human rights defenders, (...)

South Sudan’s Lafon youth condemn killings of civilians by Pari community 2019-04-03 21:54:29 Press Statement on the Fighting between Pari/ Pacidi and Lotuko/Lokiri on 24/3/2019 Release by The Lafon County Youth Union: We, the Lafon County Youth Union hereby condemn the atrocities and (...)

Joseph Malwal Dong joined the SPLM/A -IO 2019-04-02 08:35:02 SPLM/A (IO) Press Release 1/4/2019 On Hon. Joseph Malwal Dong Joined the SPLM/A (IO) The leadership of the SPLM/A (IO) would like to seize this precious opportunity to announce to members and (...)


MORE

Copyright © 2003-2019 SudanTribune - All rights reserved.