Gambia Press Union (GPU) yesterday held a daylong national forum on freedom of
expression as part of efforts to pave a way for the enactment of press friendly
forum at Tango hall was attended by representatives of state security services,
government, media, civil society organisations and the business community.
the theme ‘The role of the media in enhancing democracy and development’, the
seminar was also aimed at building partnership with relevant institutions as
well as recommending solutions to pertinent issues relating to freedom of
was part of a project called ‘Building Capacity for Advocacy’ being implemented
by the GPU and the Gambia Media Support (GAMES).
Mendy, GPU-GAMES project manager, said the national forum was the climax of the
sensitisation seminars the GPU held for members of the armed and security
forces, Ministry of Justice, and the National Assembly in 2016.
build on those seminars, the union thought it wise to bring together
representatives from those three bodies, the media and civil society to discuss
on press freedom issues with a view to explore strategies aimed at expunging
the draconian laws from our statue books,” he said.
Mendy said repealing the anti-freedom of expression laws is not for the benefit
of the media alone since everyone requires the right to express him/herself
openly without fear of being intimidated or victimised”.
least now, we are all openly expressing ourselves since the coming of the new
government but those laws that were limiting us to be silent remain in our
books,” he said.
Jammeh, GPU secretary general, said everyone should contribute in creating an
enabling environment for the media and freedom of expression in The Gambia.
he said, since the coming of the new government, there are assurances that
there will be greater opportunities for media freedom and development.
Njie, deputy permanent secretary, Ministry of Information and Communication and
Infrastructure, said freedom of expression should have a limit.
media is a very important tool but journalists should be responsible in their
reporting as every right goes with a responsibility,” he said.