Mogadishu – More victims are beginning to speak out publicly over their experiences in negative and biased on-line publications, some of which amounted to death given the false allegations against them.
The episode giving victims the opportunity to go public follows after the Somalia’s Attorney General last Monday ordered temporary suspension of 35 news websites as investigations underway.
The websites were accused unethical and violent use of media against independent organizations and individuals. The attorney general office said in the decree that it has received complaints from the Somali civic leaders, business people.
By shedding a light the victims of the media bias, Horn Observer interviews Prof. Abdirahman Haji Aden Ibbi, who is a member of the Federal parliament of Somalia and has formerly held deputy prime minister, minister of information and Mohamed Nor, managing director of Organization for Research and & Risk Management Consultancy Services and prominent civil leader and a trade unionist as they share their accounts as a victim of media extorters.
Prof. Abdirahman Haji Aden Ibbi indicated in the interview that such violence in the media could put the lives of innocent people at total risk for ease to be soft targets by the extremists groups or the intelligence society or foreign countries.
“The cost of human suffering over negative publicity amounts to a suicide,” Prof. Ibbi told Horn Observer following a damaging article against him run by various Somali news websites owned and run by Dahir Alasow, after failing to pay $1000 which he had been asked to pay.
One of the articles published in Somali languages alleges the lawmaker ‘a human trafficker” a term used for any one who fails to pay the extortion money. However, these allegations are very similar to those accused toYaasiin Maahi, the Somali Swedish diplomat earlier.
But the situation got worse, when again Prof. ibbi was given wakeup call from a threatening text message from Alasow associates, in Mogadishu telling him “he will pay the price for refusing the money.
“I received a text message from the extorters and threatened me that I will pay the price.’ Prof. ibbi said, ‘definitely, I received on 25 June 2015, after which they accused me again for selecting Somali Christians to the Southwest parliamentary selection on another article”
In another articles alleges that Prof. Abdirahman Ibbi not only campaigns for Somali Christians but also Kenyan Nationals into the formation of the regional assembly of Southwest Somalia.
“This is dangerous media business and a character of assassination and advanced blackmailing and the Somali media should reject such media on their ranks and stand with the victims.” Prof. Ibbi added.
The spiteful articles are not only limited to the lawmakers but effected the entire society in various categories. Horn Observer spoke to Mohamed Nor Hussein, who is currently the managing director of Organization for Research and & Risk Management Consultancy Services and well known civil leader and a trade unionist, to find out the other side of the story.
In November 2013, Mr. Mohamed had received a phone call from Dahir Alaow in the Netherlands, and were told that his contacts had been obtained from Omar Faruk Osman, who closely works with Dahir Alasow in the English publications and were that an article against him has been published by Faruk and was asked if he were able to $2,000 for the removal of that dangerous article, which Mohamed rejected the offer.
“We have published an article against you and we want you to pay $2000 in order to remove the article the caller who was Dahir Alasow told Mohamed Nor Mohamed, conditioning I work with Omar Faruk Osman or else the negative publication will continue, according to Mohamed Nur said in the Interview.
Mohamed Nur and Omar Faruk Osman have been comrades and worked together at the Somali Trade Union Center, before Omar Faruk was unseated by the Extra-ordinary General Assembly vote in September 2013 over corruption allegations, which Mohamed was in favor of the democratic elections of the Trade union center.
In the article, Mohamed Nur was identified as an assassin, and intelligence officer who hunts the elite Somalis business community inside Somalia and abroad and is under the spotlight of the eastern African intelligence, posting his passport, an allegation that is contrary to the facts.
“They wanted me to be hunted or killed by the both the intelligence society and the militant groups.” Mohamed Nur said, “My message was clear, I told both of them that I will never pay $2000 regardless of their rubbish propaganda.”
“Everyone who goes against their demands “referring Dahir Alasow and Omar Faruk Osman’ are blackmailed in this way.” Mohamed added.