Investigative Journalists Face Increasing Threats from Corrupt Regimes
Journalists around the globe are facing increasingly serious threats to their safety and freedom as they report stories that do not please corrupt governments. Most recently, Maria Ressa—a globally renowned investigative journalist from the Philippines—was found guilty last week for what is, by all accounts, a trumped-up charge of “cyber libel” based on a law that did not even exist at the time of the alleged violation. Ms. Ressa runs the Rappler, a website that has not hesitated to challenge Rodrigo Duterte, the strongman leader of the Philippines who was elected despite promising to assassinate journalists he didn’t like. Ms. Ressa’s public truth-telling provides urgent information for those both in and out of the Philippines about is happening in the country of 106 million people.
Unfortunately, this latest outrage is one of many. Ignace Sossou remains behind bars in Benin for posting accurate quotes from a local prosecutor online. In Morocco, Omar Radi is currently being investigated for “spying.” And the journalistic community is still reeling from the horrifying murder of Daphne Caruana Galizia, the Maltese investigative journalist who exposed political corruption in her island nation.
Investigative journalists are necessary truth-tellers, and play a fundamental role in a democratic society. Fortunately, a community of journalists is rallying together to protect each other and to continue Rappler’s crucial work. A similar community came together after Ms. Galizia’s death. But it is up to all of us who care about exposing corruption and telling truth to protect journalistic freedom.
If you have any information about corrupt dealings, please contact us.
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