Tanzania frees CPJ staff Muthoki Mumo, Angela Quintal
- South African Foreign ministry to engage Tanzanian authorities over the arrest.
Tanzanian authorities have freed two Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) staff, Ms Muthoki Mumo and Angela Quintal, who they had detained for in an unknown location.
South Africa's Department of International Relations and Cooperation (DIRCO) said the two journalists are back in their hotel.
"South Africa's High Commissioner Mr Thami Mseleku is meeting with them to discuss last night’s events. He will then engage Tanzanian authorities. DIRCO spokesperson, Mr Ndivhuwo Mabaya, spoke to Ms Quintal this morning," the SA Foreign ministry said in a tweet on Thursday.
The Kenya Editors Guild has condemned the arrest of the two journalists and called on the Tanzanian government to allow the duo conclude their work.
“We also understand that their passports and work devices such as mobile phones and computers have been confiscated. The Kenyan journalism fraternity stands with the two and endorses the work CPJ does in helping creating safe spaces for journalists to work across the world,” said the Guild’s chairman Churchill Otieno in a statement to newsrooms.
Mr Otieno said the editors’ body was shocked with the news that Tanzanian operatives went to the Southern Sun Hotel and detained Ms Mumo, a former Nation reporter, and her colleague Ms Angela Quintal, a former Mail & Guardian editor.
“We have credible information that the action is related to the two journalists’ work…and call upon authorities in Tanzania to uphold the rule of law and ensure press freedom,” said Mr Otieno.
The two journalists were being held at an unknown location, and for an undisclosed reason. People who identified themselves as immigration officers searched their belongings at the hotel and later moved them to the unknown location.
Ms Mumo and Quintal's twitter accounts were also suspended, raising fears Tanzanian operatives may have interfered with their devices.