The Press Union of Liberia (PUL) in conjunction with other journalists across the world recently concluded the celebration of events marking world Press Freedom Day. The events were held on Thursady, May 3, 2018, in the coastal city of Harper, Maryland County, South Eastern Liberia. This year’s Celebration brought together Journalists from across the Country as part of PUL’s relentless efforts aimed at decentralizing the activities as well as mainstreaming every journalist, regardless of gender, background and location.
The Celebration was characterized by a parade of Journalists alongside students throughout the principal Streets of Harper City, and an indoor program at the Harper City Hall.
Dr. Elliot Wreh Wilson, President of the Tubman University, served as the Keynote speaker. Dr. Wreh admonished journalists to distinguish between news reporting and opinion pieces or editorials. He said news reports must be fact based and balanced. “As journalists, you should report what you see and hear and not what you are wishing, because disliking a person doesn’t mean that you should write against him/her, because the society relies on the press for the truth, by reporting and condemning the wrong actions of government and its officials and everything that might be of public’s interest,” Dr. Wreh cautioned.
He also stressed the need for free press and of speech as a Country, but without a free press the Country cannot improve.
The President of the Press Union of Liberia (PUL) Mr. Charles B. Coffey Jr., in a remark said the decision to carry this year’s Press Freedom Day to Maryland was a reflection of the reality that no part of the Country can go forward without the others.
He said Journalists in Liberia cannot be successful at reporting on development if the issues are largely about politics in Montserrado; stressing that there are areas that remain isolated without their issues being reported.
“Fellow colleagues, we can never Communicate decentralization when we in the media refused to live it, so selecting Maryland County as the venue for this year’s World Press Freedom Day celebration conveys the idea that observance of such event should at all times include real-life reportage of conditions on education, health, agriculture and others affecting our society,” President Coffey noted.
He urged all media practitioners to report the truth, respect the rights of others and works for the greater good of humanity.
May 3rd of every year is observed as World Press Freedom Day to raise awareness on the importance of Press freedom and remind governments of their duty to respect and uphold the freedom of expression law adopted at the 26th session of the UNESCO General Conference in 1991.
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