Patience Zirima travelled to London

Patience Zirima travelled to London
Published: 17 July 2019 (168 Views)
Patience Zirima of Media Monitors (Zimbabwe) travelled to London to attend the Global Conference for Media Freedom on July 10 and 11. Here she reflects on what she'll take home from the event, which was hosted by the UK and Canadian governments:

If there is one thing to take away from the Global Media Freedom Conference held in London on 10 – 11 July 2019, I think it was the high-level commitment to defend freedom of the media around the world. There were several good outcomes: commitments made to put money into a Global Media Defence Fund while another declaration on media freedom was launched: the joint declaration by the special rapporteurs on freedom of expression (UN, ACHPR, OSCE and OAS). https://www.osce.org/representative-on-freedom-of-media/425282?download=true.

While declarations show a positive commitment to free expression, the panel of special rapporteurs noted that the declarations remain a "soft law". They are not binding on member states. Such declarations however remain important for countries such as Zimbabwe, which is in the process of amending media legislation. I believe that the attendance of Foreign Affairs Minister Sibusiso Moyo, and Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Information Nick Mangwana at the conference is hopefully a sign of commitment to strengthen media freedom provisions in Zimbabwe in line with international standards.

The safety and security of journalists was tackled. One wall at the Printworks venue showcased an A – Z of those journalists killed as they were doing their work.

From Africa, John Momoh, Chairman & CEO, Channels Television, Nigeria presented cases where the ownership of media houses by politicians has been detrimental particularly during elections. The "over-regulation" of the media that includes prohibitive licensing fees and threat of withdrawal of broadcasting licenses are used to limit free expression, he said. What was striking to me was that regardless of context and the democratic state of any country, the threats to media freedom are a cause for concern.

I did feel that there weren't enough voices from Africa. I fear that this could also limit access to available resources to tackle media freedom issues that affect countries in the global south. Many countries in Africa face exactly the same concerns as those raised by participants, including strengthening the public service role of the media through strengthening public broadcasting. There were also discussion around tackling global problems of disinformation. These impact all countries.

The conference has raised expectations for the defence of freedom of the media around the world. Whenever countries next review progress, the delivery of promises made at this conference will come under the spotlight.

- Patience Zirima

 0

You May Like These Videos

Comments

There are no comments.

Latest stories

Europe sends a strong message to Mnangagwa

by Mandla Ndlovu | 20 August 2019 | 83 Views

Jonathan Moyo, Kirsty Coventry mourn Mnangagwa's 'love-rival'

by Mandla Ndlovu | 20 August 2019 | 71 Views

Our 'scoop' obsessed jurnos, first things first

by Tondorindo Murisa. | 20 August 2019 | 47 Views

A Letter to Zimbabwe National Army Officers

by Poverty-Stricken Zimbabwean | 20 August 2019 | 70 Views

Chamisa's hired soldiers caught with their pants down

by Dr Masimba Mavaza | 20 August 2019 | 71 Views

European Union shocks Mnangagwa's government

by Mandla Ndlovu | 20 August 2019 | 65 Views

Rebecca Malope retires

by Mandla Ndlovu | 20 August 2019 | 110 Views

The Crocodile in Crisis

by The Times | 20 August 2019 | 135 Views

'Zimbabwe to issue cash notes soon'

by Bloomberg | 20 August 2019 | 182 Views

Zimbabwe youths rally behind Chief Ndiweni

by Mandla Ndlovu | 20 August 2019 | 138 Views

Zimbabwean woman forced to give birth standing up in South Africa

by Staff reporter | 20 August 2019 | 145 Views

Open letter to Jacob Mudenda: What was your role during Gukurahundi?

by Nicholas Ncube | 20 August 2019 | 101 Views

Moral authority is a pre-requisite for Good Governance

by Big Monday with Tinashe Eric Muzamhindo writes: | 20 August 2019 | 78 Views

Zimdiaspora in final push

by Thabo Makuyana | 20 August 2019 | 90 Views

WATCH: Soldiers in Gweru march on behalf of Chamisa's MDC

by Staff reporter | 20 August 2019 | 177 Views

August 16 exposes the MDC's insincerity

by Nobleman Runyanga | 20 August 2019 | 80 Views

Mnangagwa 'love rival' dies

by Staff Reporter | 20 August 2019 | 134 Views

State effects a de facto ban on civilian politics

by Luke Tamborinyoka | 20 August 2019 | 85 Views

Chitembwe signs Harare City deal

by Staff reporter | 20 August 2019 | 80 Views

Zanu-PF congratulates Mnangagwa

by Staff reporter | 20 August 2019 | 82 Views

Govt hires 19 doctors

by Staff reporter | 20 August 2019 | 85 Views

Duo in trouble for assaulting ex-mayor

by Staff reporter | 20 August 2019 | 76 Views

Kambarami and Chigora found not guilty

by Staff reporter | 20 August 2019 | 84 Views

BREAKING: Bomb scare in Bulawayo

by Staff reporter | 20 August 2019 | 86 Views

Match fixing scandal rocks Zifa Southern Region

by Staff reporter | 20 August 2019 | 73 Views

Chunga not qualified to coach TelOne side

by Staff reporter | 20 August 2019 | 85 Views

Zanu-PF hails Sadc

by Staff reporter | 20 August 2019 | 70 Views

Teen gangster pleads guilty

by Staff reporter | 20 August 2019 | 65 Views

No pay, no invigilation: Zimsec told

by Staff reporter | 20 August 2019 | 61 Views

Chamisa raises ante against Mnangagwa

by Staff reporter | 20 August 2019 | 66 Views

Police ban MDC Gweru demonstrations

by Mandla Ndlovu | 20 August 2019 | 52 Views

Zanu-PF vows resistance against MDC 'regime change' plot

by newzimbabwe | 20 August 2019 | 48 Views

MDC's campaign for Chief Ndiweni release worrisome

by Editorial - Newsday | 20 August 2019 | 65 Views

Rural teachers chicken out

by Staff reporter | 20 August 2019 | 39 Views

Protests a form of feedback

by Zanda Shumba | 20 August 2019 | 38 Views