top of page

SLAJ demands action for online attacks and threats against Journalists

The Sierra Leone Association of Journalists (SLAJ) has expressed deep concern over the recent increase in online attacks against journalist Thomas Josephus Dixon, particularly instigated by Anthony Vandy on social media. The association is calling for immediate action to address this troubling trend. Dixon, the Editor of Salone Times Newspaper, has reported receiving threatening SMS and WhatsApp messages from unidentified phone numbers after posting on Facebook criticizing the First Lady, Madam Fatima Maada Bio, for alleged arrogance.

As a vocal socio-political commentator and critic of public officials, Dixon's unwavering stance has made him a target of relentless cyber attacks, which seriously violate the right to freedom of expression.

SLAJ President, Ahmed Sahid Nasralla, has condemned the escalating attacks, asserting that "These sustained online assaults on journalists are unjustified. Democracy relies on the freedom of citizens, including journalists, to express their opinions. We are witnessing a concerning pattern of political enthusiasts targeting journalists who challenge their viewpoints. Political leaders must urge their supporters to refrain from such anti-democratic actions."

Furthermore, SLAJ received a troubling report from former Secretary of SLAJ Southern Region, Alie Badara, detailing death threats and attempts to burn his residence, allegedly by loyalists of the Southern Region leadership of the Sierra Leone Police. Dixon and Badara have been advised to formally file reports with the police, with the Media Reform Coordinating Group (MRCG) duly notified of the concerning incidents.

Highlighting the urgent need to ensure the safety of journalists both online and offline, SLAJ emphasized that no journalist should live in fear or face intimidation while carrying out their journalistic duties. The organization fervently called on authorities to promptly investigate these threats and hold accountable those responsible.


bottom of page