Botswana authorities must drop all charges against journalist David Baaitse and Kenneth Mosekiemang.
The Bostwanan journalists who were accused of taking pictures of an unmarked building allegedly belonging to the Directorate on Intelligence Service (DIS) had their phones and camera confiscated by the DIS agents.
Local report says Baaitse and Mosekiemang were arrested on June 18 by plain clothes security agents, and accused for “common nuisance”, after which they were detained overnight in the police holding cells and, and released after the intervention of their lawyer, the next day.
Baaitse and Mosekeimang who work for the privately owned Weekend Post Weekly are expected to appear at the Broadhurst Magistrate’s court in relation to the charges.
Further report reveals that the duo refused to plead guilty to the charges and said they were simply doing their jobs, however, if convicted, they may face fines of up to 5,000 Botswana pula ($426) or jail terms of up to two years, or both, according the Botswanan Penal code
AMDF condemns the arrest and detention of David Baaitse and Kenneth Mosekiemang, this is an act against press freedom, and the charges are baseless.
We are calling on DIS and related authorities to release the personal gadgets belonging to the journalists, and drop all charges against them.
Practicing journalism should never be termed as “common nuisance”, neither should any journalist be prosecuted for carrying out his job.