His Excellency Prime Minister Abdi Farah Shirdon today welcomed the decision by the Supreme Court to free a journalist after charges against him were dropped.
“I welcome the release of the journalist and I congratulate him on his freedom,” the Prime Minister said. “I have publicly stated my concerns about this case in the past few weeks and I have also declared that it was not appropriate for the government to interfere with the judiciary, whose independence is guaranteed under our constitution. We have been determined to let justice take its course and, although it took longer than I would have liked, today we can say that justice has been done.”
The Prime Minister said the case highlighted the need to press on with reform of the police and judiciary. Freedom of expression, respect for a free press and protection of human rights, especially combating sexual violence against women, were core government values, he said.
“Looking back on this case, I believe it demonstrates the critical need to reform our police and judiciary,” the Prime Minister said.
The Prime Minister pointed out that there has been a sharp drop in the number of attacks against journalists in recent months and highlighted the $50,000 reward which has been offered for information leading to the successful conviction of journalist killers.