After years of repression, the Gambia has made tremendous improvement in media freedoms and the working environment for journalists, according to the 2019 Press Freedom Index by Reporters Without Borders (RSF).

The yearly press freedom index categorised the media climates in more than 180 countries and territories.  

In the 2019 ranking the Gambia moved up to 92, putting it 30 spots higher than last year. RSF attributes the jump to a change in government, under which the human rights climate in the country has greatly improved.

‘‘New media outlets have been created, journalists have returned from self-imposed exile and the criminalization of defamation has been declared unconstitutional,” the RSF report said of Gambia.

Arnaud Froger, RSF Director for Africa, commended the Gambia Government and Gambian journalists for the remarkable progress on press freedom in the Gambia, and wished the trend continues.

‘‘We appeal to the Gambia Government without any delay, to abolish draconian Media Laws,’’ he pleaded.

The RSF Africa Director said that plans are in the offing for the Gambia to host World Press Freedom rankings next year.

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