of the Network of Gender Journalists for Women and Cultural Advancement
(NoGJWCA) have been trained on ethical reporting, gender base violence, health
implication of FGM/C, women rights and child marriage.
The three-day training, which was held at NaNA Conference hall in Bakau, was organized by Women’s Bureau in collaboration with the Ministry of Women, Children and Social Welfare. It was funded by United Nations International Children Fund (UNICEF).
Neneh Touray, assistant director of information and communication at Women’s Bureau said gender based violence continues to hinder progress of women and girls in the country and is against the basic human rights of women and girls.
She said FGM/C and child marriage continue to be very high in the country, even after a presidential ban in 2016.
She said the fact that FGM/C has been an old age traditional practice in The Gambia, peoples’ awareness about its implications remain in doubts. “Therefore, this training is very important to all of us because information needs to be given out and it need to be accurate and adequate.”
Pateh Baldeh, President of Network of Gender Journalists for Women and Cultural Advancement (NoGJWCA) said the training is very crucial and important to his members as media practitioners.
Giving the background of the network, Mr. Baldeh said it was established under the auspices of Women Bureau in 2009 at Trans-Gambia Lodge in Pakalinding, Lower River Region (LRR), where some media practitioners were selected with other groups like the religious leaders and traditional communicators.
“The network was established to closely work with Women’s Bureau when it comes to enhancement and empowerment of women and children in this country, as well as to fight against anything that is harmful in our traditional practices that’s affecting the girl child and the women.”
Dr Samba Faal, a lecturer at the University of The Gambia School of Journalism and Digital Media said as journalists, their role is not only to inform and entertain, but they are also seen as the fourth estate because they have a major role to play in the development process.
Dr Faal said the rights of people cannot be violated overnight, saying as journalists, it is their duty to be watchdogs of the society.
Sheikh Omar Dibba, one of
the Resource people said the media has a crucial role to play in national
development to address issues that affect us in our everyday life, and issues
like child abuse are issues of everyday life.