Seychelles | Freedom House

Freedom of the Press

Seychelles

Seychelles

Freedom of the Press 2004

2004 Scores

Press Status

Partly Free

Press Freedom Score
(0 = best, 100 = worst)

52

Political Environment
(0 = best, 40 = worst)

17

Economic Environment
(0 = best, 30 = worst)

18

The constitution provides for freedom of speech but also restricts this right by protecting the reputation, rights, and privacy of citizens, as well as the "interest of defense, public safety, public order, public morality, or public health." Civil libel lawsuits resulting in steep monetary penalties have been used repeatedly against independent media outlets. Sued for libel 10 times in the previous 7 years, the opposition weekly Regar was once again brought to court by the government in 2003. Although the private press continues to criticize the government, harsh legal penalties promote self-censorship. The state retains a near monopoly over the broadcast media, whose coverage adheres closely to official policy positions. High licensing fees have discouraged the development of privately owned broadcast media.