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Deyda Hydara’s 6th Anniversary commemorated

Dec 20, 2010, 11:31 AM

The Gambia Press Union in collaboration with Media Agenda last Thursday organized a commemorative lecture to mark the 6th anniversary of the assassination of Deyda Hydara, former Managing Editor and Co-publisher The Point newspaper.

The lecture was held at the TANGO hall in Kanifing, and coincided with a recitation of the Holy Quran at the residence of the late Deyda Hydara in Bakau Katchikally.

George Christensen, proprietor of Radio 1 FM delivered the public lecture on the topic: “The Impact of the Internet on the Future of the Newspaper”.

Mr. Christensen in his lecture gave a detailed explanation of the internet, which he said should not be seen as a threat, but an additional source of spreading information.

Mr Christensen, in his presentation, also recommended that all newspaper establishments should have their own radio stations to operate alongside their newspapers for the sake of more effective dissemination of information and sustainability.

“With such arrangement in place, there would be no need for radio stations to translate news from newspapers into the local languages as they can as well have reporters on the ground to be airing news of fair and factual reporting,” he opined, calling on media houses to integrate with the internet.

In a statement read on her behalf by Emil Touray, Secretary General of the Gambia Press Union, Ms Ndey Tapha Sosseh, president of the GPU, described the day as worth celebrating.

“We should all rejoice in the fact that he (Deyda Hydara) will always be remembered as a courageous, steadfast and committed journalist, one who ascribed to the singular pursuit of truth, justice, transparency and accountability,” she stated.

According to the GPU president, the late Deyda Hydara died a hero and a martyr to the cause of a press freedom in the Gambia.

“When we think about the heinous way in which he was murdered, we are sad and our spirit dampened, but we find solace in the fact that the intentions of those who brutally murdered him have failed miserably in their evil design to silence the voice of truth,” she added.

Pap Saine, Managing Director and Co-publisher of The Point newspaper, gave a profile of the late Deyda Hydara, dilating on how the two of them started at Radio Syd in 1970. According to him, in 1983 Deyda Hydara, Baboucarr Gaye (also belated) and himself established a The Senegambia Sun, a weekly paper. This paper, he added, closed two years later due to financial constraints and political reasons.

The late Deyda, he added, was a truthful man, who inspired many people into journalism.

Commenting on the humanitarian life of the late Hydara, Pap Saine revealed that the late Deyda was the first person who came up with the initiative to fence the Old Jeshwang cemetery, among others.

The ceremony was chaired by Cherno Jallow, a veteran Gambian journalist, and the vote of thanks given by Madi Njie, assistant secretary general of the GPU.