Speaker chides reckless media; wants NMC to be given powers to bite

The Speaker of Parliament Edward Doe Adjaho is scandalized by what he says is the growing  irresponsibility by the journalists and media practitioners and has called for the amendment of the media laws to fight the canker.

Speaking at an event in Ho, the Speaker noted with concern that the repeal of the criminal libel law in 2001 has opened the flood gates for intemperate language in the media.

“After the repeal of criminal libel law in this country it appears the spirit of the amended legislation has been lost.

“The repeal of the law has made citizens and sections of the media and journalists reckless and unprofessional in their work.

“Some of them do not care about the damage they cause the good name and reputation of the people,” he lamented.

He said the posture of the media has in no small way polarized the country.

Rather than promoting sensationalism and irresponsible comments by political actors, Mr Adjaho believes the media has a bigger responsibility to sustain the country’s young democracy.

“I do believe in responsible speech. As the fourth estate of the realm media has a responsibility to be temperate in their reportage of political acts, omissions and speeches and events.

“If a person or a political actor makes an irresponsible or potentially explosive statement, should the media report or publish it? Is it not the duty of the media to weigh the potential harmful effect of that statement and avoid reporting and publishing what is toxic to national health?”

Doe Adjaho reminded media practitioners of the atrocities in Rwanda which was sparked by the comments in the media and to be guided by it.

“It is time to reexamine the laws establishing the NMC…This law should be amended and given the needed teeth to bite. Otherwise reckless reportage will destroy our peaceful nation” he stated.


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