Jul 2, 2008, 6:21 AM
As we mark yet another World Press Freedom Day, it is quite important that the media fraternity in the country put more emphasis on harnessing the enormous potential in the young journalists.
Young journalists are today playing a very important role in the country’s media landscape, and yet most of them are grappling with enormous challenges.
While they are the hope for the future of the Gambian media, young journalists could also help in the advocacy for the enactment of a Freedom of Information bill.
They could use their columns, talk shows and microphones to champion a worthy cause of creating a really free society, where everyone would be free to express himself or herself.
The country’s young journalists need motivation and, of course, the enabling environment to be able to exercise their right to inform.
The young journalists and media practitioners, in general, are being urged to continue playing their rightful role in speaking for the voiceless, and to end the culture of impunity.
Once more, as we mark this great day of ours, we urge the authorities to create the enabling environment to allow us to effectively carry out our national duty.
The right to freedom of expression is a fundamental human right that is recognised by the 1997 Gambian constitution.
We therefore use this day to laud the efforts of Gambian media practitioners, especially the young journalists, who over the years have proven to be responsible and committed journalists, despite the many challenges.
While we are not asking for favours for the young journalists, we are calling for them to be seen as the hope for a brighter media in the country, allowing all to play their part without distraction.
We call on the friends of the media, especially our development partners, to work closely with the young journalists in order to give them more strength and vigour.