CEMESP, British Embassy Partner To Promote Media Freedom in Liberia

Center for Media Studies and Peacebuilding Executive Director, Malcolm Joseph

The British Embassy near Monrovia has commissioned series of training programs and media engagements for Liberian journalists to be undertaken by the Center for Media Studies and Peace building (CEMESP), a Liberian organization.

The proposed training encapsulates modules in digital security, regulatory frameworks and using the FOI to promote data-driven investigative reporting.

Consistent with a grant agreement, CEMESP is set to implement the project entitled:  Strengthening Media Freedom through an Enabling Media Regulatory Environment with direct funding from the Government of Great Britain through its Embassy in Monrovia.

Already, a prepared training manual capturing the relevant issues is under close scrutiny to roll out a training of trainers workshop that will be passed on to a group of journalists from print and broadcast media as well as some civil society representatives who are promoting citizen journalism at the level of social media.

Based on a prepared work plan the two sets of workshop will run until November 28 this year.

A number of school press clubs have also been earmarked for some form of capacity building training to engage them in effectively using social media platforms.

According to a CEMESP release, there will also be series of radio talk shows where emphasis will be placed on ethical grounding of journalists and the need to pursue pending media reforms that had long been initiated.

Journalists trained are expected to especially form themselves into networks to use the FOI in embarking on investigative journalism to bring integrity to their contents and desist from rumor peddling that has implications for national peace and stability.

Among other things, the proposed training and related engagements with media legal experts, Parliamentarians, MICAT, among others,  have been designed to create a platform to further the debate on the choice between the existing National Media Council of the Press Union f Liberia or considering pushing through the legislature another bill for a media regulatory model that could be better responsive to the Liberian context in the aftermath of the enactment of Kamara Abdullai Kamara Press Freedom Act.

Under this project, which is expected to come to close early next  year, the British embassy in Monrovia through its support to CEMESP is therefore buttressing efforts in media freedom both online and offline to contribute to healthy debates in consolidating the fragile democracy in Liberia.

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