Online activists arrested for defaming South Kordofan governor

April 20, 2018 (Radio Dabanga)

Police in Khartoum state arrested an activist for 'defamation of character' of the South Kordofan governor on Facebook. Two other activists were arrested under the same complaint.

The police arrested activist Awadiya Mursal from her home in El Haj Yousef in Khartoum North and took her directly to Kadugli, the capital of South Kordofan. The state government made a criminal complaint against her and others for defamation of the character of the governor of South Kordofan on Facebook.

Earlier, police in Kadugli arrested activists Mohsin Mousa and Mahmoud Mahjoub following the same complaint. They have remained in police custody.

The fourth and final person the criminal complaint was made against, is the director of the national aid organisation the Sudanese Red Crescent Society (SRCS) in the state. His current state is unknown at the time of publication.

The activists posted texts on Facebook, accusing the state governor of smuggling gold from Kadugli in the government's vehicles, and that their contents were seized on the way to Khartoum.

Residents in Kadugli have confirmed the accusations of gold smuggling against the governor, alleging that “the governor has been smuggling gold for his personal benefit while neglecting the development of the state”.

The Geological Research Authority of Sudan (GRAS) estimated that every week between 50 and 100 kilograms of extracted gold are sent to Khartoum for black market sale and export.

Seventy-five per cent of gold gets smuggled. And smuggling is being enabled by the inconsistency of policies regulating the sector, monetary policies, corruption and militia control of the gold producing area of Jebel Amir.

Blogger persecuted

Mohamed Karrar, a blogger in Red Sea state in eastern Sudan was summoned to appear at the state's police station last week, for criticising the state government in a blog on Facebook.


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