The Director of the Dakar Matin news site, Pape Alé Niang started a hunger strike on Friday, November 2, 2022. The investigative journalist denounces his arbitrary imprisonment. From his cell in the city of Sébikhotane.
As of this Friday, December 2nd, I decided to observe a hunger strike to denounce my kidnapping on the Papa Gueye FALL aisles, my sequestration and my psychological torture in the premises of the Urban Security, my unjust and arbitrary imprisonment in Sébikotane prison.» he declared.
The investigative journalist also announced through his lawyer, Ciré Cledor Ly, that he will not accept any medical intervention even if he is in danger. He warned the prison administration of this decision. He also announced that he would not accept any care from the prison administration.
I wanted to confirm that Pope Alé made the irrevocable decision to start a hunger strike from Friday morning. In addition, he indicated that he would not accept any medical intervention from anyone if he found himself in danger outside his personal doctor and that the prison administration was informed of this decision and also had all the contact information of his personal physician”, said his lawyer, Ciré Cledor Ly.
In Dakar, the Coordination des Associations de la Presse (CAP) has already called for the journalist’s release through a series of actions. A protest march was held on 18 November in this direction. A joint editorial was published Monday, November 14, 2022 in the various media of the national press «to remind national and international opinion that the monster is back».
In France, a demonstration took place on 12 November at the same time as in the United States. Reporters Without Borders denounced the arrest. “It is quite disastrous for Senegal that a journalist is now in detention. I remember that Senegalese President Macky Sall, when he took office, made a commitment that during the exercise of his mandate power no journalist would be detained. This is a commitment he also made to me when in Paris, where the Paris Forum for the Press on November 11, 2018, I remember, very well, he was there with heads of state and governments to launch the partnership on information and democracy, Senegal was one of those first states and it renewed that commitment and that commitment is not a small commitment and there is an obvious and extremely regrettable breach of that commitment and we solemnly call on it today to put an end as soon as possible to this breach of his own commitment and a commitment that is important for him and that is even more important for Senegal,” declared Secretary General Christophe Deloire on 1 December 2022 following his visit to Pope Alee Niang. His close family denounces this arrest and talks about kidnapping and forcible confinement. According to his little brother Thierno Niang, “Pape Alé told me that he had been following him for months,” comments that you can find in this interview:
As a reminder, Pape Alé Niang was arrested on 6 November without a summons. He was then imprisoned on 8 November 2022. According to his lawyers, he is being sued for disclosure of information not made public by the competent authority likely to harm National Defence, receiving administrative and military documents and disseminating false news that would discredit public institutions. This release of documents comes in the context of the affair between the party leader Pastef Ousmane Sonko and Adji Sarr, a masseuse who accuses him of repeated rape and death threat, the accusations that the mayor of Ziii Guinchor denounces and calls this case a plot.