Updated Thursday 6th May 13.00 GMT. Sudanvotes and Amnesty International spoke with Stephen Gatwich Taban, who confirmed that Bonifacio Taban had been released from Bentiu State Prison. He is now recovering and wishes to thank everyone involved in his release for their untiring efforts and support. Tomorrow, he must return to the State Prison to collect his radio recorder and camera.
Updated Monday 3 May. 10.00 GMT. Stephen Gatwich Taban has been in touch over the weekend, telling sudanvotes that Bonifacio Taban was beaten and tortured on Saturday. This is yet to be verified, but creates great concern with all his colleagues at Bentiu FM and sudanvotes.com
Updated Friday 30 April 12.00 GMT UNMIS made direct appeals yesterday to release Bonifacio Taban to no avail. Reasons given are due to his lack of accreditation, but Taban has been accredited with Bentiu FM as their main presenter for many years.
Updated Thursday 29th 10.00 GMT
We have received unconfirmed reports that Bonifacio Taban has been released Bentiu FM and sudanvotes are looking to confirm this information.
Updated Tuesday 27th. 10.00 GMT
Bonifacio Taban's brother confirmed Tuesday that Bonifacio is still being held in Bentiu State Prison, without charge and with no knowledge of when he will be released. Bentiu FM and UNMIS are continuing to press for his immediate release on the ground and Amnesty International and Reporters without Borders have been contacted about Bonifacio's situation.
Updated Monday 26th. 11.00 GMT
Sudanvotes correspondent Morris Lodiong has this morning spoken to Bonfacio Taban in Bentiu State Prison, under Police custody. He is in good health and confirmed that he has not yet been charged with any crime. He believes he is being held because of an article he wrote about the re-election of Governor Taban Deng Gai and the security forces want to prevent him from any further investigation. Bentiu FM and UNMIS are pressing for his release on the ground.
On Friday 23rd April around 20.30 Bentiu FM and sudanvotes correspondent Bonifacio Taban was arrested in Bentiu, Unity State while covering the general strike called across Bentiu town, at the announcement by the State High Election Committee and the National Election Commission (NEC) that the SPLM incumbent Governor Taban Deng Gai had won the elections for governor against independent candidate Angelina Jany.
Bonifacio working at Bentiu FM
Following the general strike and demonstration that was called in protest at the results, three people were shot dead by soldiers and four seriously wounded. Bonifacio Taban was covering the story from Bentiu Hospital where the dead and injured were taken, when he was arrested and beaten by security and had his equipment confiscated. He was later released around 22.00 Friday evening, without the return of his equipment.
On Saturday 24th April Bentiu Hospital confirmed that one of the injured men had died over night, taking the death toll to four, with three still seriously injured in hospital. That morning, Bonifacio Taban's brother, said that Bonifacio Taban had been re-arrested and taken to an unknown location. His family are still not aware of the reason for his arrest or his exact whereabouts.
In accordance with international and Sudanese media election law, journalists cannot be targeted, harassed or arrested while reporting on elections.
Please write to sudanvotes below or contact Bentiu FM with any more information on the situation in Unity State or the whereabouts of Mr Bonifacio Taban Kuich.
Any further information received wil be updated over the coming hours.
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