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City of Banjul
Tuesday, October 20, 2020

Daily News publisher speaks

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By Omar Bah The publisher of long absent The Daily Newspaper, Madi Ceesay has said that operating a newspaper or being a practicing journalist was a nightmare under former President Jammeh. Mr Ceesay’s paper was arbitrarily closed on the instruction of former President Jammeh. Even though other media which suffered similar fate we reopened, Daily News was not allowed to continue. “It was hell to operate a media organization or to be a practicing journalist under a dictator like the former President Yahya Jammeh,” he told The Standard in an exclusive interview yesterday. He said the Jammeh-led government was very unfriendly to the media, adding, “It was secret that the former president hated journalists who he called ‘unpatriotic sons of Africa”. “Jammeh had also threatened the entire media fraternity with killings openly and sometimes he will even say whosoever crosses his line the person will go six feet deep,” he added. Mr Ceesay who is about to restart his paper, said Jammeh had warned while angrily reacting to GPU’s position on the killing of Deyda Hydara that he can kill ten to fifteen journalists to protect million Gambians. The Daily News publisher also recalled the killings and disappearances of the likes of Deyda Hydara who was murdered in cold blood on the 13 December 2004 and journalist Chief Ebrima Manneh who used to work for Daily Observer a pro-APRC newspaper as one of the erroneous act committed by the Jammeh administration. Mr Ceesay said though his paper was illegally closed by the Jammeh regime he continues to publish the online edition with no fear, because when he decided to be journalist his thought was to die as a journalist. “I have told many aspiring journalists that all you need to do is to defend the truth, when you are reporting anything just be truthful and don’t be bias. Whoever has the powers can get you arrested or killed, but the truth cannot change no matter what happens. My strength is the truth and I don’t fear come what may because death is inevitable” he said. He said The Daily News will soon be back to business as usual, saying “We were not anti Jammeh, all we were doing was reporting the fact and that will continue.”]]>

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