By Yien Gattour Mead
Unity State Police Commissioner Maj. Gen Gordon Machar Yieh has pledged to uphold journalists’ rights to access information without hindrance.
Gen. Machar was meeting journalists in Bentiu town over the weekend, after the arrest of a journalist, William Kuol Makuar, who works with a local radio station -Kandial FM.
Makuar, allegedly a soldier before South Sudan’s independence, was arrested on 18 October 2023 by the SPLA-IO in Bentiu IDP camp.
He joined journalism as a Kandial FM reporter in Bentiu town in 2016, but the SPA-IO claims that he participated among soldiers during the 2014 conflict.
The journalist disputed the SPLA-IO’s claim, and he was later released without court proceedings while his ID and other documents remained under detention at the Sector 1 gate.
Union of Journalists of Unity State pledges to continue engaging authorities to improve the media landscape in the state.
Gen. Machar, the police commissioner emphasized that under articles 32 and 26 of the 2011 South Sudan transitional constitution, citizens have the right to access information.
Machar urged journalists to report any harassment, detention, or obstruction during their work to his office.
The meeting was attended by 18 journalists and police officers from the criminal investigation department.