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75 years old man arrested for Facebook post after the Prime Minister of Mauritius lodges police complaint

Ish Sookun

Ish Sookun
10 July 2020 • 3 min read


The ICT Act of Mauritius was amended in 2018.

Following those amendments what we saw in the country was mostly people being detained or questioned for posts on Facebook, which in many cases, are simply political satire or citizens taking out their frustration against the government through memes and posts. Likewise, a former Ambassador of Mauritius in Madagascar, aged 75 years old, posted an edited photo of the Prime Minister of Mauritius sitting over a pile of currency notes, along with the text in creole that translates to "Motto of Pinokio. Let's kick ass as much as we can before we leave."

That can probably also be translated as "let's steal as much as we can" if the creole slang is taken into consideration.

I am assuming the creole word for "ass", i.e "fesse" raised eyebrows and the cybercrime officers considered it along with the edited photo to be enough material to arrest a 75 years old man. Oh come on! What threat was caused here or how annoyed could you, as a Prime Minister be, in order to lodge a complaint to the Police for such a matter? #Facepalm

Before supporters of the Prime Minister jump to the latter's defence I am referring to the l'express article that mentions that the person was interrogated following a complaint by Pravind Jugnauth, i.e the Prime Minister of Mauritius. I quote from the article:

Il a été interrogé suite à une plainte du premier ministre Pravind Jugnauth concernant une photo postée sur Facebook.

Meanwhile plenty of edited photos of the former Prime Minister, Navin Chandra Ramgoolam, former Opposition Leader, Paul Bérenger, the current Opposition Leader, Arvin Boolell, and the Director of Public Prosecutions, Satyajit Boolell, still lurk on the Facebook page of the MSM Party.

Vire Mam

The one political party that has benefited the most by editing photos and videos of people, particularly their political opponents, is non other than the MSM Party itself. Till date they still mention the "vire mam" video in their Facebook page; see the left menu on their page.

What about edited photos of their political opponents?

The above edited photo was posted on the MSM Party's Facebook page on 7 February 2015, after the then Lepep Alliance won the General Elections. If the Prime Minister condones such images on his party's Facebook page, then why is he annoyed when others do the same with him?

The above photo posted on the MSM Party's Facebook page caught my attention particularly as the post is shared with an ex-Board Member of the ICT Authority who was arrested earlier this year for breach of the ICT Act.

The above was posted on 16 July 2015 on the MSM Party's Facebook page. That was surely around the time when the Director of Public Prosecutions, Satyajit Boolell (in the photo), was fighting against Pravind Jugnauth in a corruption case.

I certainly have no fun in posting these images but I had to make a point when I read that that a 75 years old fellow, irrespective of the political party he adheres to, was arrested for posting, IMHO, a not-so-offensive photo & text about the Prime Minister.