Ministers warn journalists on ethics

Calls for an honest, credible and responsible media dominated yesterday’s town hall meeting at the Telecom House in Kacyiru, Kigali.The meeting discussed the role of media practitioners in national development. It was telecast live on the state radio and television.“The Government fully supports media development in this country but journalists should avoid writing untrue stories,” Finance Minister, James Musoni who chaired the session, said.
Musoni (left) and journalists peruse through a Sunday Times copy yesterday after the town hall meeting on media. (Photo/ J Mbanda)
Musoni (left) and journalists peruse through a Sunday Times copy yesterday after the town hall meeting on media. (Photo/ J Mbanda)

Calls for an honest, credible and responsible media dominated yesterday’s town hall meeting at the Telecom House in Kacyiru, Kigali.The meeting discussed the role of media practitioners in national development. It was telecast live on the state radio and television.“The Government fully supports media development in this country but journalists should avoid writing untrue stories,” Finance Minister, James Musoni who chaired the session, said.

Justice Minister, Tharsisse Karugarama observed that media industry the world over plays a leading role in national development but warned that a newspaper that blackmails leaders can create unrest.
“Media practitioners have laws in place to direct them.

Whoever steps on the wrong side of the law will have their day in court,” Karugarama said.

He was, however, quick to explain that calling for journalists to observe the rule of law should not be interpreted as government’s crackdown on journalists.

Internal Affair Minister, Mussa Shiekh Harerimana, warned government employees who leak government documents to journalists, saying the law would catch up with them no matter how long it takes.

He said government leaders took the oath to protect state secretes and should abide by that.

“If a journalist writes a story quoting a letter smuggled to him, he is equally liable to punishment.

He has to tell us who gave him the letter before his case is dropped,” Harerimana cautioned.

Information Minister Prof. Laurent Nkusi said journalists must criticise from an informed point of view to help government correct its mistakes. 

Comments about objectivity come months after government said it would undertake a comprehensive Needs Assessment of the country’s practicing journalists to determine their challenges.

Public Service and Skills Development Minister Prof. Manasseh Nshuti said months ago that plans were underway to assess journalists’ requirements with a view of improving their skills.

The audit, according to Nshuti, is meant to realise journalists’ strategic objectives of providing adequate knowledge and information for national development.

Ends

 

Have Your SayLeave a comment