Two journalists discharged in return for guilty plea on one count

first_img Sierra LeoneAfrica Organisation The 2020 pandemic has challenged press freedom in Africa Help by sharing this information Reports Sierra LeoneAfrica Follow the news on Sierra Leone March 12, 2014 – Updated on January 20, 2016 Two journalists discharged in return for guilty plea on one count to go further News November 27, 2020 Find out morecenter_img News March 29, 2020 Find out more Receive email alerts Reporters Without Borders takes note of the Freetown high court’s decision on 10 March to caution and discharge Independent Observer managing editor Jonathan Leigh and editor Bai Bai Sesay after pressuring them into pleading guilty to a single count of conspiracy to defame the president.“Sierra Leone’s justice system took more than ten hearings to drop this case,” said Cléa Kahn-Sriber, the head of the Reporters Without Borders Africa desk. “The judge’s decision to discharge the journalists ends a six-month-long ordeal but their being forced to plead guilty to a conspiracy charge is no mark of honour for the country’s institutions.“The government’s policy of harassing the media is a threat to fundamental freedoms. The authorities use criminal defamation and sedition charges to intimidate journalists and then allow the proceedings to drag on in order to keep up the pressure.”The proceedings against Leigh and Sesay were finally abandoned on 10 March after more than 10 court appearances since October, in which they faced charges on 26 counts of criminal libel, sedition and conspiracy in connection with an editorial critical of President Ernest Bai Koroma.All but one of the 26 charges, conspiracy to commit libel against President Koroma, were dropped prior to the final hearing. But Leigh and Sesay were pressured into pleading guilty to the conspiracy charge, in return for which the judge did not pass sentence and just issued a caution.According to Sierra Leone Association of Journalists (SLAJ), the judge said in a final warning to journalists, that “truth is not a defence in seditious libel and that they must be able to prove beyond reasonable doubt that the publication in question is in the public interest.” They judge did not say how “public interest” should be defined.Leigh and Sesay were arrested on 18 October, a day after publishing the offending editorial – headlined, “Who is molesting who, the President or the VP?” – and were not released until 4 November after paying bail of 500 million leones (85,000 euros) each.Sierra Leone is ranked 72nd out of 180 countries in the 2014 Reporters Without Borders press freedom index, 10 places lower than in the 2013 index.———————————–24.10.2013 – Editorial criticizing president prompts multiple proceedingsReporters Without Borders is alarmed by the way the authorities seem bent on hounding Jonathan Leigh, the managing editor of the Independent Observer, an opposition daily, and Bai Bai Sesay, its editor, over an editorial critical of President Ernest Bai Koroma.The two journalists have been detained ever since their arrest by the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) on 18 October, a day after they published the editorial, which was headlined: “Who is molesting who, the President or the VP?”“We call on the courts to free these two journalists immediately and unconditionally, as they have been held arbitrarily for seven days in appalling conditions,” Reporters Without Borders said.“We are also amazed by all the different judicial and administrative proceedings in this case. Why was the CID, a police unit that is supposed to investigative major crimes, the first to intervene? And, as well as the civil suit brought by the ruling party on the president’s behalf, why is the Independent Media Commission also trying to get in on the act?“What is the reason for such determination to persecute two journalists who just did their job by publishing an opinion piece? We call on the government to comply with its international obligations to respect freedom of expression and guarantee press freedom.”The head of the CID initially said Leigh and Sesay were to be prosecuted under section 33 of the 1965 Public Order Act, which concerns libel. It was later reported that they had been charged with “inciting treason” under article 17 (3)(a) of the constitution. The change to a more serious charge is indicative of the level of political influence over the investigation.At the same time, the ruling All People’s Congress has brought a libel suit against Leigh and Sesay on President Koroma’s behalf. Immediately after the article’s publication, the President demanded the publication of a retraction and an “unreserved apology” but they were arrested before they had time to respond.And, finally, the Independent Media Commission (ICM), the government’s media regulatory body, issued a summons to the two journalists on 22 October to appear for questioning.Moses Kargbo, the secretary-general of the Sierra Leone Association of Journalists (SLAJ) told Reporters Without Borders that a judge refused to release on bail Leigh and Sesay when they appeared in court yesterday afternoon. The journalists were charged with “seditious libel”. The reading of the charges lasted over an hour. Another hearing is scheduled for 29 October. Meanwhile, they are to be held in Freetown’s main prison.Attempts to intimidate the media are continuing. The Independent Observer’s printer as well as journalists with Global Times and Salone Times have been summoned for questioning by the police.Sierra Leone is ranked 61st out of 178 countries in the latest Reporters Without Borders press freedom index.Photo : President Koroma Covid-19 in Africa: RSF joins a coalition of civil society organizations to demand the release of imprisoned journalists on the continent Coronavirus infects press freedom in Africa RSF_en News April 6, 2020 Find out morelast_img read more

Cornell Nutritional Expert, Vermont Baby Formula Company Urge Parents Not to Dilute Formula

first_imgCornell Nutritional Expert, Vermont Baby Formula Company Urge Parents Not to Dilute Formula with Extra WaterGEORGIA, Vt., Dec. 3 /PRNewswire/ — In response to press reports of parents diluting baby formula in this difficult economy, a nutritional expert and a leading manufacturer of infant formula are urging parents to breastfeed or use formula responsibly by following the instructions on the can.”It is critical that parents refrain from diluting baby formula with extra water during these tough economic times,” said Barbara S. Levine, R.D., Ph.D., director of the first NIH-funded Nutrition Information Center at Weill Cornell Medical College. “If parents choose to formula feed, they must remember it is an infant’s sole source of nutrition.”PBM Nutritionals, LLC, a supplier of store-brand infant formula found at Walmart, Sam’s Club, Target, Kroger, Walgreens, and other leading retailers in the United States and throughout the world, recommend parents breastfeed or use formula responsibly.”Breastfeeding is best for babies,” said PBM CEO Paul B. Manning. “When it comes to using formula, parents should follow the directions on the label exactly to ensure that their babies get the nutrition they need for healthy growth and development. We are pleading with moms and dads to read and follow the instructions on their formulas of choice.””If money is an issue, parents must understand that store brand infant formulas cost up to half the price of comparable national brands,” added Levine. “And the FDA sets the nutritional and quality standards for all infant formulas, so store brand formulas have to meet the same strict guidelines as national brands.”PBM is a leading supplier of infant formula sold throughout the world; its commitment to research and development ensures that all of its formulas are safe, high quality, and offer the latest advances in nutrition. For more information, visit http://www.pbmnutritionals.com(link is external) and http://www.pbmproducts.com(link is external).About PBMPBM is privately owned and based in Gordonsville, VA. PBM companies specialize in manufacturing, distributing, and marketing consumer food, nutritional, and pharmaceutical products. PBM companies include PBM Holdings, Inc., PBM Products, LLC, PBM Nutritionals, LLC, PBM Canada Holdings, Inc., PBM (Guangzhou) Nutritionals Co., Ltd., and PBM Products Mexico, S. de R.L. de C.V. For more information, visit http://www.pbmproducts.com(link is external).last_img read more

British Land shares a slice of the Irish action

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The Latest: Philadelphia clarifies ban on public events

first_img Share This StoryFacebookTwitteremailPrintLinkedinRedditThe Latest on the effects of the coronavirus outbreak on sports around the world:___City of Philadelphia officials have clarified their ban on public events, opening up the possibility the Eagles would be allowed to have fans in the stadium if the city changes its rules before or during the season, assuming the NFL plays games this season. The city on Tuesday banned all large public events that require public permits through February 2021. Teams will be permitted to play without fans in Philadelphia.The Phillies will host the Miami Marlins next weekend when the major league baseball season begins.___The Baltimore Ravens won’t have fans at their training camp this summer because of the coronavirus pandemic.The team announced Wednesday that it will adhere to NFL/NFLPA protocols that prohibit fans from attending practices, even if state and local government regulations would eventually permit them to do so. The Latest: Philadelphia clarifies ban on public events July 15, 2020 The OVC says it plans to reschedule for a date closer to the start of the season, which is slated for Sept. 3, a Thursday night.The conference’s meetings were held virtually in June for the first time in league history.___The Denver Broncos are telling season ticket holders that Empower Field at Mile High won’t be at full capacity this season because of the coronavirus outbreak and face masks will be required if local officials allow a limited number of fans to attend games to maintain social distancing.The Broncos told season ticket holders in a memo that they’ll get priority for any single-game tickets that are sold this season whether or not they opt for a full refund for 2020 or a credit for 2021. ___The Tennessee Volunteers report multiple positive results for COVID-19 after the university ran a batch of tests last week.The tests were conducted after the Fourth of July holiday weekend. A spokesman confirmed Wednesday that the positive tests spanned “multiple sports.”Tennessee previously had two basketball players test positive, with both clearing quarantine. A graduate assistant for the football team tested positive and was quarantined for 14 days.Tennessee is bringing athletes back to campus in phases, with football the first to return on June 8. Associated Press The team’s ticket office will contact season ticket holders about game and seat availability after local capacity guidelines are established, according to the memo sent Wednesday.The memo also outlined enhanced safety precautions at the stadium in addition to face masks and social distancing requirements, including cashless concession options, touchless bathroom fixtures, sanitation stations, and “the latest air purification technology.”–Arnie Stapleton reporting from Denver.___The Head of the Charles Regatta is going virtual because of the new coronavirus, only the second time since 1965 that the two-day rowing event has been canceled. center_img With 44 players invited, the event was part of USA Hockey’s selection process in determining its team to compete at the world junior championships in Alberta in late December.Without citing the coronavirus pandemic, USA Hockey executive John Vanbiesbrouck said it was in everyone’s best interest to cancel the event.___The Green Bay Packers say they won’t admit fans to any training camp practices or preseason home games due to the coronavirus pandemic.This also applies to the annual Packers Family Night, an annual event that features a practice and other activities. The Family Night event will still take place at Lambeau Field and will be televised statewide, though the date and time haven’t been announced yet. The Phillies will host the Miami Marlins next weekend when the major league baseball season begins.___The University of Michigan says fewer fans, if any, will attend games at “The Big House” if the Wolverines play college football games this year.The athletic department says a final decision will be made after conferring with medical experts, the school’s leadership and the Big Ten Conference, along with government officials and agencies.Michigan’s policies include the elimination of season tickets for the 2020 season. Paperless tickets will be available for individual games to only season ticket holders, not the general public, if there is a season and spectators are given access to the 107,601-seat Michigan Stadium. Plans regarding attendance for regular-season games haven’t been announced yet. Season ticket holders have the of opting out of the chance to buy tickets this year without losing control of their tickets for next season.The Packers have already conceded their regular-season home games will have a “significantly reduced” capacity, if there are any spectators at all.___The Philadelphia Eagles won’t be allowed to have fans in the stadium if the NFL plays games this season. The city banned all large public events that require public permits through February 2021. Teams will be permitted to play without fans in Philadelphia. Since 2011, up to 2,000 fans a day have attended camp at the team facility in Owings Mills, Maryland.Ravens president Dick Cass said the team believes the decision is in the best interest of the public and the organization.The defending AFC North champions have not announced the starting date for training camp, which usually begins in late July.___The Ohio Valley Conference announced Wednesday that it has postponed the league’s Virtual Football Media Day scheduled for Monday. The competition scheduled for October will instead go virtual, allowing rowers to take part by racing a 2.9-mile (4.7 km) course on their own bodies of water using a GPS device, or on an ergometer.The Head of the Charles is the world’s largest two-day rowing race, with 11,000 competitors from around the world.The race was also canceled in 1996 during a rain and wind storm.___USA Hockey has called off holding its world junior summer showcase, set to be held in Michigan in two weeks. Josiah-Jordan James, a sophomore guard on the basketball team, spoke to reporters last week about how tough it was seeing two teammates test positive for COVID-19. He said that drove home the seriousness of the pandemic and the need to follow all the safety precautions even when he doesn’t feel like wearing a mask.___More AP sports: https://apnews.com/apf-sports and https://twitter.com/AP_Sportslast_img read more