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Journalists Challenged To Promote Peaceful Communication 

By Walter Wilson Nana — Cameroonian journalists have been enjoined to practice in a manner to promote peace and social cohesion. This was the kernel of a one-day workshop on the theme; Men and Women in the Cameroonian Media Landscape: the challenge to promote peaceful communication.

Journalists at workshop on peaceful communication

Speaking to The Post at the end of the workshop, the workshop Coordinator, Michel Ferdinand of Club Media Ouest, said the more than twenty journalists drawn from the East, West, Southwest, Northwest and Centre Regions have been empowered to pursue their career in a way to give peace a chance. “Journalists should handle issues of conflict with care and diligence,” he said.

Theophile Sobngwi, a facilitator from the Bafoussam-based Research Institute for Development, RIDEV, shared with participants, ideas on how to report during conflicts, how to contribute in maintaining peace and how to say the facts, objectively, without hurting the conflicting parties. Sobngwi enumerated some Dos and Don’ts that reporters should look at when writing on peace and the role of the media in maintaining peace.

Participants were urged to use their media houses to promote positive values, competences, social justice and good governance observed in Cameroon and other parts of the African continent. Sobngwi observed that democracy, consensus and social justice are amongst the conditions for the construction of a peaceful society, which journalists must be abreast with, as they carry on with their daily activities.

The RIDEV Executive Secretary reminded journalists that they have to be responsible in their reports on issues of violence and peace. Other topics that were treated included; ‘The role of the media and new technologies in the face of democratisation in the African society’, Journalism and citizenship: the place of ethics and the current state of the Cameroonian media’.

At the close of the workshop, some of the journalists were of the opinion that Cameroonian journalism will progress to greater heights if the economic atmosphere of the country is improved and the law governing the profession is overhauled.

The workshop was hosted at the Yaoundé office of the Ecumenical Service for Peace, and organised by Club Media Ouest, CMO, whose headquarter is in Bafoussam, West Region. The CMO was supported by World Association for Christian Communication, WACC.

First published in The Post print edition no. 01334

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