Sierra Leone profile

Newspaper reader in Sierra Leone Freetown has dozens of newspapers

Media freedom in Sierra Leone has its limits; media rights monitors say high-level corruption is a taboo topic, with officials using libel laws to target errant journalists.

Challenges facing broadcasters include unreliable power supplies, poor funding and low advertising revenues. There are dozens of radio stations, most of them privately owned.

A national public broadcaster, the Sierra Leone Broadcasting Corporation (SLBC), was formed in 2010 by a merger of the former state-run broadcaster and a UN radio network.

BBC World Service can be heard on FM in Freetown (94.3), Bo (94.5) and Kenema (95.3). Voice of America and Radio France Internationale broadcast on FM in Freetown.

Dozens of newspapers are published in Freetown, despite low literacy levels. Most of them are privately-run and are often critical of the government.

By 2014 there were 92,000 internet users (Internetlivestats.com).

The press

Television

  • Sierra Leone Broadcasting Corporation (SLBC) - terrestrial network with limited coverage
  • ABC TV - private

Radio

  • Sierra Leone Broadcasting Corporation (SLBC) - national broadcaster
  • Radio Democracy 98.1 FM - Freetown station, once the voice of the exiled Kabbah government, regarded as pro-government
  • Kiss FM - private station in Bo
  • SKYY FM - private station in Freetown
  • Capital Radio - private station in Freetown
  • Believers Broadcasting Network - Freetown, Christian FM station
  • Voice of the Handicapped - founded as an FM station for disabled citizens, but attracts a wider audience

News agency/websites

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