Sunday, February 5

‘Broadcast media is often a target for unpleasant expressions’

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Mr. Jobe made these remarks at the PURA Broadcasting Stakeholders Forum on 12 July 2021 at the Sir Kairaba Conference Hall, Bijilo.

The theme for the forum was: ‘Enhancing Media Professionalism for a Sustainable Election.’

He said the rise of vulgar languages create room for disunity, societal discord and even render the society ungovernable.

Mr. Jobe added that journalism as a noble trade aspires for the common good that would yield a positive impact rather than inflicting excruciating pain and suffering on the citizenry.

He added that PURA’s regulatory measures including monitoring activities, are not to witch-hunt anybody but rather to promote a degree of quality broadcast services and encourage standards to align with international best practices.

Ebrima Sillah, minister for Information, Communication and Infrastructure, said that the role of the media in making sure this election is conducted in a peaceful environment could not be over emphasised.

“The media has a crucial role in their work and ensuring that people get information about the activities of the election and the information should be impartial, neutral, professional and non-bias,” minister Sillah said.

Mr. Sillah pointed out that the government of The Gambia is committed to providing the enabling environment for the media to do its job in the election cycle, but also in the manner that is responsible under the laws of this country.

The director of the Consumer Affairs of PURA, Solo Sima, said the forum aims to consolidate their collective professional responsibilities from impartiality and accuracy. 

“In order to achieve the ultimate goal of securing our national broadcasting space, inherent data and resident infrastructure for the benefit of this country; it can only be achieved through honest and open collaboration for the benefit of all.’ Mr. Sima said.

Babucarr Cham, chairman, Gambia Media Council, also spoke about journalists being neutral and balanced as fundamental in their reporting. He said that reporting hate speeches should not be tolerated.

Mr. Cham added that journalists should always be aware of the positive and negative impacts of what they give out to the public.

The solicitor general of The Gambia, Hussein Thomasi, said that the media has an important role to ensure citizens’ rights are respected and elections are conducted fully and fairly.