Decriminalise defamation
and desist from arbitrary
arrests, torture and
intimidation of journalists,
human rights activists, and
government critics.

Allow for independent judicial
oversight over surveillance
requests and enact a data
protection legislation in line
with international human
rights standards

Repeal the provisions of Article
289 of the Penal Code Act, 2008
and Clause 28 of the Media
Authority Act on criminal

Amend the provisions of Articles
13 and 32 of the National
Security Act of 2014 in line with
international human rights
standards on surveillance

Uphold Clause 6 (13) (b) of the
Media Authority Act which
protects media from censorship
by any official or non-official
Adhere to the provisions of
Section 17 of the Right of Access
to Information Act on proactive
disclosures of public information.
According to the Committee to Protect
Journalists (CPJ), at least six journalists were
killed in the course of their work between 2015
and 2017.1
On 14 September 2020, Zachariah Makuach
Maror was sentenced to one year in jail for the
offence of defamation under section 289 of the
Penal Code Act. The sentence was for an article
he published on government corruption with
The Dawn Newspaper in January 2020.2
The South Sudan National Security Service
(NSS) has carried out various attacks on media
practitioners including:
Removal of articles criticising the
government in Al-Mougif, an Arabic daily
Arrest of the Voice of Eastern Equatorial
Radio journalist, Ijoo Bosco for sharing
news on human rights abuses in South
Sudan4 and Jackson Ochaya5 for allegedly
quoting a rebel spokesperson, respectively.
Increase in public proclamations and
intimidation of journalists by government
officials which included urging them not to
‘cross the red line’ in their coverage.6

Article 32 National Security Services Act
(NSS Act) provides the NSS with unfettered
powers to monitor communications and
gather information relating to any person
without adequate privacy safeguards.
Surveillance in South Sudan has created a
chilling effect among citizens as government
actors deploy various rights-averse and
privacy-threatening equipment to monitor
human rights activists, journalists and
The NSS has expanded its surveillance and
infiltration beyond security institutions, to
civil society organisations, media houses, and
universities countrywide without effective
safeguards for privacy rights.8
According to the United Nations, agents have
used these powers to intimidate, detain, and
murder journalists, opposition activists,
civil-society representatives, and non-Dinka
citizens, forcing many to flee the country. 9

Put measures in place to
reduce the cost of Internet
access and ensure its
Only 8% of individuals use the Internet in South
Internet access is limited to the capital Juba and
few major towns, leaving out the vast majority of
South Sudanese people living in rural areas.

Select target paragraph3