PWYP condemns the arrest of Ali Idrissa

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Update 20/05/2017: Ali Idrissa was released on Saturday evening.

Publish What You Pay (PWYP) condemns the arrest of Mr. Ali Idrissa, coordinator of PWYP Niger and of the Niamey-based civil society organisation Rotab. Mr. Idrissa was arrested at his home in Niamey by 10 Nigerien armed policemen at 5 pm today. The arrest follows a statement by Mr. Idrissa earlier today accusing the President of Niger, Mr. Issoufou Mahamadou of “putting democracy in brackets.”

Ali Idrissa is also a member of the PWYP Board and the PWYP Africa Steering Committee. He has long campaigned on issues of transparency in the mining sector. He recently campaigned for Nigerien citizens to fully benefit from the exploitation of uranium. Niger is the fourth largest world producer of uranium yet remains one of the poorest countries in the world. Ali Idrissa was named Man of the Year of Niger in 2013 and one of the 100 most influential people in Africa. Niger has enshrined the principle of transparency of its natural resources in its 2010 Constitution and has been implementing the EITI since 2007, thereby committing to respect the fundamental rights of civil society actors in Niger. Ali Idrissa was an EITI Board member from 2011 to 2016.

Publish What You Pay calls on the Government of Niger to immediately release Mr. Ali Idrissa and respect the freedom of expression and association of civil society in Niger.

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