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    Sierra Leone-Social-Investigation

    Sierra Leone: Growing call for investigation of journalist’s death

    APA-Freetown (Sierra Leone)

    There are growing calls in Sierra Leone for investigation in the death of a journalist after autopsy reports indicated he died of head injury.

    The deceased journalist, Ibrahim Samura, suddenly passed away last week, less than three months since he was beaten by elements of the former ruling All People’s Congress (APC) party.

    Two senior members of the APC – a former Freetown Mayor, George Herbert Williams and a businessman, Sanusi Bruski, were alleged to have ordered Samura’s beating while he was covering a scene on Election Day on March 31.

    Media reports cited him and other fellow journalists saying they were beaten because the politicians didn’t want them to report their activities at the scene in the west end of the Sierra Leonean capital, Freetown.

    The Sierra Leone Association of Journalists (SLAJ) at the time pressured the Sierra Leone Police to investigate the matter and bring the accused to book.

    However, subsequently, only Mr Williams was indicted, according to media reports. It is unclear what the state of the case is now.

    The journalist’s sudden death last week sparked speculation about the role that incident played on his demise. And on Tuesday reports indicate that an autopsy carried on his corpses revealed that he died of a heart attack caused by a fractured skull which left blood dripping down into his heart and other vital organs.

    This has further galvanized campaigners for investigation. The calls are mostly made on social media and by his colleague journalists. But the umbrella journalist body said the decision to take legal
    action had been waived by the family of the deceased and it therefore has no intention of pursuing it.

    Ahmed Sahid Nasrallah, Secretary General of SLAJ, told APA on Wednesday that the family has said they weren’t pursuing it, and that as an association they were willing to respect the will of the family.

    He also said Samura had accepted an apology from his alleged attackers and he added that if the state wanted now they could pursue it since the deceased journalist had lodged a report and issued a statement to the police.

    Those who are calling for investigation say it is necessary to stem a rising trend of violence against journalists in the country. Journalist Samura was publisher and editor of the New Age newspaper.
    He is described by many of his colleagues as a fearless journalist who wanted to see justice prevail in Sierra Leone. His remains are due to be laid to rest on Sunday.


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