The government maintained its pressure on the state-owned media, which did not have complete editorial freedom. But the privately-owned press encountered no particular obstacle.
Only one real press freedom violation was registered in 2003. José Carlos Semedo, a journalist with the state-owned broadcaster RTC, was suspended at the start of August for two months along with a producer and an editor because two guests on the "Press Club" programme accused RTC’s management of waste while the rest of the corporation was starved of resources and equipment. "Press Club" was dropped.
In another case, two journalists received court summonses at the end of the year for allegedly libelling a former minister when they accused him of physically attacking a fellow journalist in February 2002. The libel suit could come to trial in 2004.
But on the whole, freedom of expression was in good shape in Cape Verde. Several commercial radio stations were founded in 2003 and the online press continued to expand and become an important way of reaching the sizable Cape Verdean diaspora.
The country is also becoming more and more aware of the importance of the role the press plays. The Association of Journalists of Cape Verde (AJOC) held its first general assembly in five years while the government announced in September that a new communication law was being prepared. It was expected to deal with the assignment of press cards and the way the state-owned media operate.