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African govts. increasingly censoring Internet with shutdowns - NGO says telecom firms can be allies to open Internet

Author: Lungelo Shezi, htxt.africa (South Africa), Published on: 3 February 2017

The siege on internet freedom: How African governments are tightening their grips, 31 Jan. 2017

...[Cameroon] is the latest in the list of countries that have responded to citizen unrest or elections by targeting the main medium of communication used to rally around protests. While internet shutdowns are not new to the continent, they have seen a rise in recent years... Burundi, Chad, the Democratic Republic of CongoEthiopiaGambiaGabon, and Uganda all saw shutdowns in 2016 either before, during or after each country held national elections. [Also refers to actual or threatened shutdowns in Zimbabwe, Mali, Algeria, Ghana, Kenya, South Africa.]...

Nanjira Sambuli, Digital Equality Advocacy Manager at the World Wide Web Foundation [says, in addition to legal and political avenues to fight internet censorship,] it’s also important to engage telcos as allies as they don’t usually want to shut down the internet as it eats into their revenue.  “At the very least, companies should publicly share how many shutdown requests they have received and what they have done to push back against them,” she says.

Read the full post here