Home | News    Wednesday 14 January 2009

South Sudan authorities detain Juba Post managing editor in Juba


By Manyang Mayom

January 13, 2009 (KHARTOUM) — The managing editor of The Juba Post, Isaac Billy Gideon, was detained Monday for a press release that was run in the newspaper two months ago. Gideon, who spent about nine hours in custody, was arrested at 10:00am yesterday but was bailed out at 6:50 pm.

The Juba Post Editor-in-Chief Charles Luganya Ronyo, who is currently in Khartoum, strongly condemned the arrest of his managing editor. He said that a newspaper cannot be held accountable for press releases or public opinions. "The arrest of Mr. Gideon is an attempt at intimidation for newspapers not to run press releases or opinion concerning the land grabbing in the south."

The Juba Post newspaper has been registered in Khartoum on 9 January, 2005 and start printing 5,000 copies weekly from Monday and Wednesday double a week said Luganya. "Our newspaper is read in Southern Sudan and in Khartoum, the capital city of Sudan."

The Madi community in Juba issued a press statement two months ago condemning the malpractices of land allocation in Nimule to Business. In the press release that was also published by many other newspapers mentioned SPLA Brigadier William Deng of being in charge of the land mismanagement?

"The press release was signed by advocate Becho Pitia" said Luganya.

When the press release was published, Brigadier Deng approached the newspaper and denied that story, but the Juba Post told him that they are not accountable for the press release from the Madi community.

However, Deng has filed a case against The Juba Post under Article 152 of 2008 of South Sudan for libel and self-defamation.


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  • 14 January 2009 03:57, by newpolitiks

    All newspapers and other media has responsibility to verify and confirmt heir sources to make sure it is not a malicious or fake or a false alarm news or press release. when the newspapers and radio stations register they were given rules and regulations upon which they have to operate responsibly,if they break their own code then they are not above the law,just because you are from the media does not mean you are a bove the law or does not make mistake but you will have to answer for yur own stupidity.for example now Israel has blocked all jornalists from entering Gaza,is that respect for media and press? they did that because they don’t want the media to compromise their operations thats all.journalists need to be warned when they register their agencies that they have responsibilities and they have to abide by the law or risk being arrested and taken to courts like any law abiding citizens,they do not have a special consideration,they are same like any citizen.

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    • 14 January 2009 23:44, by pills

      Mr. Newpolitiks,

      Is this is how you justify the move taken by the so called security organs in Juba? Let me ask you what is this security agents doing in maintaining security in Juba? Who are resposible for the killings and disappearences in and around Juba?

      Mr.William Deng has full right to protect his name, but it’s the court of law that can make the hearings and punish the newspaper management if they are proved quilty not the security organs. If we are not careful we’ll be worse than Jallaba in term of respect to the freedom of press and freedom of expression.

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  • 14 January 2009 04:13, by J.James

    What the mess!

    Do article 152 protect the corrupts? So called Deng should relate himself to the say that no smoke without fire, yes he should be shame of himself before he open his ugly lips because his name did not appeared there among the millions without evidence but for solid reasons known very much by him.

    GOSS must also encourage a freedom of press for we don’t welcome saddam Hussein and Meloshivoc theories of abstraction of justic in South Sudan. Journalist must be given wide space to write or air whatever Sudanese people want to know.

    All those buses bought through stolen governemet funds, secret accounts, foreign mansions own by South Sudan officials as well and unacceptable conducts must be reported openly. Those who try to resist justic must be dealt with in one way or the other.

    I hope all agree

    God bless.

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    • 14 January 2009 05:04, by Lokang

      shutup man,he is taking a legal step and thus if every body take the same move, then the whole sudan would be in a good stand. All I don’t like about it is, detention is not necessary till someone is prove guilty. Deng himself must prove that he is innocent and if he doesn’t, he must be jailed.

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      • 14 January 2009 07:32, by Gatbentiu

        This is bulshit,I though that there is freedom of press as well as freedom of speech,the so called Deng should not take land by force and take the journalist to court,this court ruling must know that there is freedom of speech in this country.
        The judge himself must be brought to justic


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        • 14 January 2009 14:37, by muzungu Alfred

          Dear they so-call Politicians,

          Truely the truth is always bitter. Most of this politicians and the same millitary guys use their power to take over the property of the civilians. The information press put for public consumption is collection of data from people.

          There is a saying that even if a tortoise pollut under the water, the smell will come over the surface of the water. All what people do right now will be reveal out with time. I advise those who say they are born to rule should stop their barbaric acts. It’s well known that its because they lose some of their blood due to the cut on the face. This make them not to reason well.The press guys should be left alone so long as the they don’t go out of rule gorvning them. Stop your foolish act otherwise South Sudan will develop.

          The writer is poor orphan.

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  • 14 January 2009 22:45, by JINO MADA

    south sudanese claiming they are transfoming into a democratic society, opinions and freedom of expression should be allowed.Madi intellectual have rights to complains what’s happening in thier lands,those corrupted officials should be brought to jusice.the land grabbing should be stop.

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    • 17 January 2009 20:56, by Theresa Angua

      An Open Letter to Brigadier William Deng
      By Theresa Angua
      I understand why your name matters so much to you. But it did not surface in publications [Juba Post, Sudan Tribune] as a matter of coincidence. In short, if you had understood the rule of law, your job title, your responsibilities to the people of Southern Sudan, and if you had possessed any moral values and had a shred of decency in you as a human being, you would not have been rendered so desperate as to try to save your reputation by harassing innocent media executives who were simply doing their job. This says lot about your qualifications for your job and your ability to think and reason as a normal human being.
      First of all, I would like to know why it took you so long and by surprise to learn that news of your nefarious deals and all the heinous crimes being committed under your supervision in Ma’diland were known all over the world and well documented? Secondly, the press release was clearly signed by the advocate [the spokesperson] for the Madi Community in Juba and in overseas. If you seriously believe that your reputation has been sullied by the article and the abuses reported were indeed untrue, you should’ve approached the Madi Community leaders and their advocate, not resorted to rounding up newspaper executives. Thirdly, he [the spokesperson] put out all his contact information at the bottom of the statement [if at all you can read]; why didn’t you contact him directly? I must also point out that all newspapers have clear guidelines and ethical standards to adhere to when it comes to reporting –do you think people in that capacity would put their own reputation on the line by reporting false stories? Lastly, Mr. Deng, the fact that you failed to see the basics and reason before embarking on a wild mission to harass media executives confirms your unsuitability for your job. It also gave you a rude awakening to the fact that the cover of the jungle can no longer afford you the luxury of immunity from the cruelty of history. The only things that will help you salvage whatever is left of your beleaguered reputation are the following:
      1. Apologize to us, the Madi people for ALL atrocities that your soldiers all the armed IDP’s have carried out in our land since the fall of Nimule to this day under your direct supervision with your full consent.
      2. Bring to justice ALL those behind the rapes/forces marriages, killings, destruction of farmlands, looting of properties, illegal /forceful occupation of lands, illicit profiteering [am talking about you].
      3. REPATRIATE ALL IDP’s, including persons you imported from Uganda and Kakuma TO THEIR ORIGINAL VILLAGES . The UNCHR, GOSS, and the Madi Community are all there for this purpose.
      4. Make a safe and unconditional return of ALL Madi women, young girls, and children who have been abducted by your loyal subjects, the SPLA and the armed IDP’s.
      5. Return all stolen Madi houses, properties, and anything of value to their original owners.
      6. Abolish the arrival of ALL new occupants, be it from Jonglei, Kenya, or Uganda.
      7. Stop imposing unlawful curfews on innocent people with the pretext of “restoring order” while intention is to subject my people to further humiliations.
      Anything short of the above, Mr. Deng will not sanitize your image. Your military fatigues and stars will not earn you the respect you crave. Neither will they wash the blood of my people from your hands. You will go down in the cesspit of history as: THE ONE who sold their land to foreigners for selfish gains, THE ONE who supervised heinous crimes on their land and against their people, THE ONE who denied them their inalienable rights to their land, their existence, and their dignity.

      The author is a Sudanese lady and can be reached at: Tangua88@gmail.com

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