#National News

GPU trains The Point Journalists on conflict sensitive reporting

Mar 31, 2022, 12:26 PM | Article By: Sulayman Waan

The Gambia Press Union (GPU) on Wednesday convened a day’s training for journalists of The Point Newspaper on conflict sensitive reporting at a ceremony held in the medium’s office at West field.

 

The training, which is part of GPU’s series of advocacy on conflict sensitive reporting, exposed participants to risk assessment, media Standard Operational Procedures (SOP), contingency plans, among others. 

It is also designed to arm journalists with the requisite knowledge and skills to report on conflict and its related issues, thereby ensuring their safety.

In his opening statement, Bekai Njie, editor-in-chief of The Point Newspaper, described the training as ‘timely and important.’

“It is very important for journalists to receive this kind of training and it came at the right time.” he said.

Njie recalled that recently some journalists in the country were affected during a clash between supporters of a political party with security personnel.

He therefore, commended the union for their foresight in organising such training for journalists, saying the exercise would go a long way in helping journalists to protect themselves when gathering news in hostile situations. 

He assured that The Point Newspaper would take the training seriously and to put into practice what has been learnt. 

Muhammed S. Bah, president of GPU reminded that journalists are vulnerable especially when reporting or covering conflict events.

“It is very important for journalists to be trained on conflict sensitive reporting to ensure their safety and for them to understand safety precautions when reporting in hostile areas.” he said.

The training, he said, is part of the GPU’s mandate to ensure Gambian journalists are protected in their daily work. 

“This training would enable journalists to cover the National Assembly election campaigns and the imminent election safely. Therefore, it is our responsibility to have such exercise because we do not want any journalist to fall into any trouble while reporting on conflict.” he added.

In her presentation, Isatou Keita, vice president of Gambia Press Union, who doubles as a resource person, said there is a greater need for journalists to put safety and security as their principal concern.

“It is important for reporters to know their location and position when covering conflicts issues. You should position yourself  in areas where it would be easy to find your escape route or be protected when an incident occurred.” she told participants.

Delivering the vote of thanks, Pa Modou Cham, senior reporter of The Point Newspaper, commended the GPU for organising such an interactive session ahead of the country’s parliamentary election.

“We will make sure that we utilise the training as expected.” he said.

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