Military colonel openly threatens to kill journalist

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On 13 August 2008, Jean-Christophe Houngho, parliamentary
correspondent of “Le Matinal”, a privately-owned daily newspaper,
complained to the journalists’ union that his life is in danger.

Houngho said Colonel Antoine Guy Adjaho, head of the military detachment
stationed at the National Assembly, has been consistently threatening and
intimidating him.

The journalist told the Benin National Union of Media Practitioners
(SYNAPROMEB) that, in the presence of two of his colleagues, Colonel Adjaho accused him of being on the payroll of the opposition, and threatened, “I will finish you”.

In a telephone interview with the Media Foundation for West Africa (MFWA)
correspondent, Houngbo said that was the third time the colonel had
confronted him on his reports.

Francis Okoya, President of the Parliamentary Press Corps, who was an
eyewitness, confirmed Houngho’s account.

Colonel Adjaho has however denied issuing the threats. He is quoted by
SYNAPROMEB as saying “I called him in the company of two of his
colleagues” to tell him that “you are on a path of destruction”, that “you
have no place in the profession” and that if he goes on like that, “you will
destroy yourself.”

A statement issued by SYNAPROMEB on 1 September advised the public,
including Colonel Adjaho, to use the existing mechanisms to address
problems they may have with the media.

For further information, contact Jeannette Quarcoopome, Media Foundation for West Africa, 30 Duade Street, Kokomlemle, P.O. Box LG 730, Legon, Ghana, tel: +233 21 2424 70, fax: +233 21 2210 84, e-mail:, Internet:

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