A+ A A-

Media crackdown dents our government’s picture

Last week ended with the closure of the Catholic owned radio station Bakhita Fm that broadcasts from Juba. Their news editor David Ocen was also detained and by press time was still under custody for allegedly broadcasting news that seemed to suggest that it was government forces that had provoked the fighting that broke out in Ayod of Jonglei and Bentiu in Unity state last week. The truth of the matter is that government has a role to protect the people of this country and also its territorial integrity from any aggressions whether foreign or local. And as media houses in times of national emergencies we must not be seen to be fueling the desecration of our country. Having said that however, it doesn’t seem to argue well when government is the aggrieved and at the same time the judge in its own cause. If the government felt that it was unfairly accused; there are state organs like the courts of law that can ably handle this issue to the satisfaction of both parties without necessarily resorting to the highhanded methods of detention and closure of the station. Our country’s image has been dented for the last eight months or so, because of the ongoing fighting. A simple Google search about our country will yield a barrage of very negative stories written by people who have very little understanding of this country. But because they have the opportunity to write for major International news channels and websites they misrepresent the facts as they are. Therefore we must not encourage them by creating situations where they will continue portraying this country as being on the verge of collapse. Absurd as it is, some of these actions which the security people actually take are done without the knowledge of our President but it is his reputation that is dragged down the mud whenever such retrogressive decisions are made. As we appeal to government even amidst challenges to act with restraint, we can’t forget to remind our media colleagues of their responsibility towards a stable South Sudan. We are part of the larger society so everything that affects the society equally affects us. Therefore we must do the greatest good to the greatest number of people. News that do nothing but fuel the current conflict should be properly scrutinized but this doesn’t mean that we sacrifice the truth. We can still remain truthful but at the same time help those who are in search for peace to achieve it. 

stay facebook twitter googleplus rss

Contacts: news@thenationmirror.com | Copyright © 2014 The Nation Mirror. All rights reserved | Powered by Heartbit