Liberia journalists will this Friday, May 3rd join their colleagues around the world in celebrating World Press freedom Day under the global theme, “Safe to Speak: Securing Freedom of Expression in All Media.”
The official program for this year’s celebration in Liberia takes place in the Port City of Buchanan, Grand Bassa County, under the auspices of the Press Union of Liberia, with support from UNESCO and a host of other partners.
Journalists from Monrovia and other parts of the country will start arriving in Buchanan on Thursday ahead of the celebration.
While observing the day, the PUL, in partnership with the Center for Media Studies and Peace Building (CEMESP), UNMIL and IREX-Liberia, will host a special forum on Media-Security Relations.
The forum under the topic, “Media-Security Relations: An Imperative for Consolidating Peace in Liberia,” will be addressed by Defense Minister Brownie Samakai, Deputy Police Director of Operations, Abraham Kromah; Journalist Frank Sainworla and the Country Director of Trust Africa, Ezekiel Pajibo.
PUL says, the objective of this engagement is to among other things, reinforce awareness for media freedom, access to information and safety of journalists, as well as to appreciate the roles and responsibilities of the media and security sectors in the peace and security of the country.
Personnel from Executive Protection Service and The Bureau of Immigration are also expected to participate in dialogue.
Whilst acknowledging the government’s willingness to largely allow media pluralism, PUL President Peter Quaqua observed that the wave of aggression shown towards journalists is alarming and therefore requires some soul searching.
The UN General Assembly declared World Press Freedom Day in 1993 remind governments about the need for a free, independent and pluralistic media as well as celebrate the bravery of journalist who died in the course of their work.