Burkina Faso Policies Affecting Disinformation

From ADTAC Disinformation Inventory


In 2019, the Parliament of Burkina Faso amended the country's penal code to criminalize the spreading of "fake news". This includes any "demoralization" of the military "by whatever means". NGOs and journalists denounced the law as it restricts the activities of the media and impinged their freedom. The amendments were deemed consistent with the constitution according to the Constitutional Counsel and signed into law by the president.

Article 312-13, makes it a criminal offense to “intentionally communicate, divulge, publish, or relay, by any means, false information of a kind to suggest that a destruction of property or an attack against persons has been committed or will be committed.”

There is a portion of the legislation which deals with “Offenses against the Honor, Reputation, and Privacy of Persons,” sanctioning the act of publicly insulting persons in “speeches, yelling, or threats,” with two to six months of incarceration and a fine of up to 1 million CFA francs (about US$1,700).[1][2]

These laws have been condemned by professional media organizations as restrictions of free speech and their far reaching implications given the vagueness of the laws.[3][4]

See more:

National Policies Affecting Disinformation