Freedom of the Press 2008 - St. Kitts and Nevis

Status: Free
Legal Environment: 4 (of 30)
Political Environment: 8 (of 40)
Economic Environment: 7 (of 30)
Total Score: 19 (of 100)
(Lower scores = freer)

Freedom of the press is enshrined in the constitution. A draft Freedom of Information bill was submitted to the Parliament in 2006. The independent media were active, and expressed a wide variety of views without restriction. In November the High Court ruled against the main opposition People's Action Movement's newspaper, The Democrat, in a libel suit brought against it by the St Kitts-Nevis Labour Party (SKNLP) member of Parliament, Asim Martin, his campaign manager, Earle Clarke, and the editor of the ruling SKNLP's newspaper, Labour Spokesman, Dawud Byron. In addition to these weekly newspapers published by the two main parties, there are three other non-aligned weekly newspapers. ZIZ Broadcasting Corporation, a company in which the government is a majority shareholder, operates both radio and television services. Additionally, there are seven private radio stations and a multichannel cable TV service. There are no government restrictions on the internet, and approximately 25 percent of the population was able to gain access to this medium in 2007.

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