The Butiraoi sunk near the island of Nonouti last month, and is estimated to have killed anywhere between 80 and 100 people. Only seven people survived.
Two organisations, the ABC and New Zealand's Newshub, attempted to send journalists to cover the aftermath and the investigations, but they were prevented from doing so.
The Kiribati government says the journalists were not banned, but had permit issues.
The government said the ABC had applied for a special permit, but this was on hold because the government was reviewing and finalising its permit guidelines.