A group of African journalists has recommitted to stamping out corruption by enhancing their investigative reporting.
Corruption remains a daunting challenge to good governance and sustainable development on the continent.
The journalists made the resolution after a weeklong training of trainers on Investigative Journalism and Corruption Reporting in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa.
On returning to their respective countries these journalists should pass on the newly acquired skills to their colleagues if the training is to have a major impact. Newsrooms across the continent need to be encouraged and supported to invest in investigative reporting with view to unmasking the corrupt.
Media practitioners are watchdogs for society and are in a privileged position to fight the vice through objective reporting. They are the eyes and ears of society and are in position to hold public officials accountable.
Their role in exposing the corrupt cannot be overemphasised; that’s why they are referred to as the Fourth Estate.
Rwanda maintains its reputation as the least corrupt country in the East African region, according to the annual Corruption Perception Index (CPI) reports by Transparency International.
But this does not mean that the media in Rwanda should rest on their laurels; rather they should play a major role in efforts to nip the vice in the bud.
Nonetheless, for the media to play their part they need credible information, they need dependable sources, people who are willing to share important tips. Society should view journalists as natural allies in fighting evil and demanding accountability from those in privileged positions.
You can have the best laws as far as access to public information and investigative journalism are concerned, but without a collaborative society the media can hardly play their rightful role.