[𝗖𝗢𝗠𝗠𝗨𝗡𝗜𝗤𝗨𝗘 𝗗𝗘 𝗣𝗥𝗘𝗦𝗦𝗘]
Rather guarantee and protect freedom of expression in Côte d’Ivoire
Abidjan, December 03, 2020.
On Wednesday 02 and Thursday 03 December 2020, The
Ivorian Observatory of Human Rights-OIDH
followed, like many observers of Ivorian public life, the summons, custody, trial and criminal conviction of music artists Zouglou, YODE AND SIRO for comments they allegedly made in favor of a Musical concert on November 29 in the town of Yopougon, showing their perception of the course of justice on the violence that surrounded the October 2020 elections.
Upon analysis, and without however prejudging the ongoing legal proceedings, the OIDH considers that these are statements of social satire, free criticism and the freedom of artistic expression generally permitted to authors of works of mind on public action and city management.
The freedoms of expression, conscience and opinion are sacrosanct rights guaranteed by the Ivorian constitution for all citizens.
𝐞𝐬𝐭𝐢𝐦𝐞 𝐪𝐮𝐞 𝐥𝐞 𝐜𝐨𝐧𝐭𝐞𝐱𝐭𝐞 𝐬𝐨𝐜𝐢𝐨 𝐩𝐨𝐥𝐢𝐭𝐢𝐪𝐮𝐞 𝐚𝐬𝐬𝐞𝐳 𝐭𝐞𝐧𝐝𝐮 𝐝𝐞 𝐜𝐞𝐬 𝐝𝐞𝐫𝐧𝐢𝐞𝐫𝐬 𝐦𝐨𝐢𝐬 𝐞𝐭 𝐬𝐨𝐧 𝐜𝐨𝐫𝐨𝐥𝐥𝐚𝐢𝐫𝐞 𝐝𝐞 𝐯𝐢𝐨𝐥𝐚𝐭𝐢𝐨𝐧𝐬 𝐝𝐞𝐬 𝐝𝐫𝐨𝐢𝐭𝐬 𝐝𝐞 𝐥’𝐡𝐨𝐦𝐦𝐞 𝐧𝐨𝐧 𝐞𝐧𝐜𝐨𝐫𝐞 𝐫𝐞́𝐠𝐥𝐞́, 𝐝’𝐚𝐫𝐫𝐞𝐬𝐭𝐚𝐭𝐢𝐨𝐧 𝐝’𝐨𝐩𝐩𝐨𝐬𝐚𝐧𝐭𝐬 𝐩𝐨𝐥𝐢𝐭𝐢𝐪𝐮𝐞𝐬 𝐞𝐭 𝐝’𝐚𝐜𝐭𝐢𝐯𝐢𝐬𝐭𝐞𝐬, 𝐚𝐢𝐧𝐬𝐢 𝐪𝐮𝐞 𝐥𝐞𝐬 𝐚𝐩𝐩𝐞𝐥𝐬 𝐚𝐮 𝐝𝐢𝐚𝐥𝐨𝐠𝐮𝐞 𝐩𝐨𝐥𝐢𝐭𝐢𝐪𝐮𝐞 𝐞𝐭 𝐬𝐨𝐜𝐢𝐚𝐥, 𝐚𝐮𝐫𝐚𝐢𝐞𝐧𝐭 𝐩𝐮 𝐩𝐞𝐫𝐦𝐞𝐭𝐭𝐫𝐞 𝐝𝐞 𝐟𝐚𝐢𝐫𝐞 𝐥’𝐞́𝐜𝐨𝐧𝐨𝐦𝐢𝐞 𝐝𝐞 𝐜𝐞𝐭𝐭𝐞 𝐩𝐨𝐮𝐫𝐬𝐮𝐢𝐭𝐞 𝐪𝐮𝐢 𝐧𝐞 𝐟𝐚𝐢𝐭 𝐪𝐮𝐞 𝐫𝐞𝐧𝐟𝐨𝐫𝐜𝐞𝐫 𝐥𝐞 𝐬𝐞𝐧𝐭𝐢𝐦𝐞𝐧𝐭 𝐝’𝐞𝐱𝐞𝐫𝐜𝐢𝐜𝐞 𝐬𝐞́𝐥𝐞𝐜𝐭𝐢𝐟 𝐝𝐞𝐬 𝐥𝐢𝐛𝐞𝐫𝐭𝐞́𝐬 𝐩𝐮𝐛𝐥𝐢𝐪𝐮𝐞𝐬 𝐜𝐡𝐞𝐳 𝐛𝐨𝐧 𝐧𝐨𝐦𝐛𝐫𝐞 𝐝’𝐢𝐯𝐨𝐢𝐫𝐢𝐞𝐧𝐬.
For L’oidh, since democracy is nourished by freedom, plural expression and the promotion of contradiction, the government should take all the necessary measures to benefit citizens and authors of intellectual works in particular, whatever either the tendency or the color of their opinions, guarantees necessary for the realization of freedom of expression and political and social opinion.
In this, justice, the first guarantor of rights and freedoms, has a very important role to play in order to reassure all populations and tighten the severely tested social fabric.
The General Secretariat of the OIDH
NB: the Title is from the Editorial Board.