MOGADISHU, Somalia 20 February, 2022 – The Somali Journalists Syndicate (SJS) has officially joined the UNCAC Civil Society Coalition, as part of SJS efforts to defend defends journalists’ rights and promote accountability for violations against media freedom including attacks on journalists covering corruption.

As a press freedom organisation that defends journalists’ rights and promotes accountability for violations against media freedom, joining the UNCAC Civil Society Coalition gives SJS the opportunity to engage in the international arena.

SJS has released three reports on the state of press freedom in Somalia in 2019, 2020 and 2021 that document violations against journalists and media freedom. This includes campaigns for accountability on cases of government wrongdoings. SJS also stood firmly against government bribery solicitation in Somalia.

SJS works to promote media freedom in Somalia to hold government officials accountable and to uncover cases of bribery and corruption. SJS provides legal defense for journalists whose reporting of government wrongdoing results in detention or court cases. Our target beneficiaries are local journalists who are members of SJS. Our intervention methods include training journalists, promoting their freedoms, and defending their journalistic reporting.

On 28 October 2021, SJS has submitted an official complaint against bribe soliciting by Hirshabelle State officials to the Independent Anti-Corruption Commission (IACC) of the Federal Government of Somalia and awaits IACC to launch a full and independent investigation into the case.

SJS is involved in the implementation of the Self-Assessment Checklist which is the first stage of the UNCAC review process. SJS advocates for public accountability and an end to abuses against the media such as briberies used to censor media coverage.

“We are delighted to join the United Nations Convention against Corruption (UNCAC) Civl Society Coalition. This demonstrates the importance of journalists in fighting corruption, promoting accountability, transparency and integrity for both the public and the private sectors in Somalia,” SJS Secretary General, Abdalle Ahmed Mumin said.

“We, as journalists community, have an important role in the fight against corruption. We are the most important part in eliminating systematic corruption by investigating and revealing corruption practices, demanding accountability and transparency from the public and private sectors in Somalia,” Mr Mumin adds. “Therefore, we believe that joining the UNCAC Civil Society Coalition, SJS and its member journalists will have the opportunity to engage, advocate and promote role of Somali journalists in corruption detection and defending journalists’ rights.”