By James Mathebula
Freedom of the press is under siege and attacks on journalist continue, while decision making factors “are taking more and more legal measures and adopting restrictive policies so as to be able to exercise their political control on the mass media,” said the Madiba Youth Organisation Founder and Managing Director, Mr Adam Sibuyi, in a video message published on Thursday, 02 November 2017 by the Madiba Youth Organisation, on the International Day to end Impunity for Crimes against Journalists.
“Freedom of speech and freedom of the press are essential features for any functional democracy. People need to discuss and debate openly, to inquiry the governments’ activities and make informed decisions. Free press is essential for having an active, informed, creative and engaged public opinion,” underscored the founder and managing director.
In his opinion, “free press is a facilitator for a good governing, for democracy, gender equality and combating poverty.”
Sibuyi spoke, in short, about the current status of mass media.
“Freedom of speech is under siege. Attacks on journalists and mass media continue and impunity is increasingly every day. Decision-making factors are taking more and more legal measures and adopting restrictive policies so as to exercise their political control on mass media, while many journalists are threatened with arrest, detention, incrimination for their activity,” said Sibuyi.
He brought to mind that “an increasingly larger number of journalists became subject to such threats in the latest while,” while also referring to gender discrimination in this field. “Women who chose to work in the media were and they continue to be victims of such practices as sexual and gender-related discrimination, violence, intimidation and harassment, online and offline, he also said.
Adam Sibuyi concluded his message by reminding about his country’s commitment in supporting freedom of the press.
“The Madiba Youth Organisation took the role of a supporter of freedom of the press and protection of journalists worldwide. We are here to #endimpunity,” Founder Adam Sibuyi said in a video message, while marking the International Day to End Impunity for Crimes against Journalists.