Greetings to the good people of Rivers State, and welcome to another episode of RivEthics on Radio, our character-building weekend show. Please remember that Press Freedom is the mother of all fundamental rights. Our topic today is in commemoration of the United Nations World Press Freedom Day which comes up on May 3. Don’t forget the guidelines to help us stay safe from Coronavirus. Like other past global pandemics, it will soon be a thing of the past. Stay alive by staying safe.
World Press Freedom Day is an occasion to remind the world of the importance of protecting the fundamental human right of freedom of expression enshrined in Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. With violence against media professionals constituting one of the greatest threats to freedom of expression, the theme of this year’s celebration is “Journalism without Fear or Favour”
Over the past decade, we have witnessed a dramatic escalation of violence against journalists and media professionals. In many countries, they are harassed, attacked, detained and even murdered. Today, they are endangered by this pandemic, like other frontline first responders.
Those who risk their lives to provide independent and reliable information deserve our admiration, respect and support. They understand better than anyone that the media contributes significantly to processes of accountability, reconstruction and reconciliation. The safety of journalists is an issue that affects us all.
Every aggression against a journalist is an attack on our most fundamental freedoms. Press freedom and freedom of expression cannot be enjoyed without basic security. On World Press Freedom Day, therefore, we must pledge to strengthen our efforts to secure journalists’ safety. In particular, governments and public authorities should end the pervasive culture of impunity that surrounds violence against journalists. Governments must fulfil their responsibility to ensure that crimes against media professionals are investigated and prosecuted. Let us commemorate media professionals who have lost their lives, and honour those who bring us information despite danger and risk. Above all, let us appreciate the intimate relationship between securing the safety of journalists and realizing our own freedoms. Our ability to act as informed citizens of the world depends on media that can work freely and safely.
Let us listen to our guest speaker today as he expounds on the subject. He is Mr. Victor Burubo, a veteran journalist in Port Harcourt. Please enjoy the episode.
Our special Rivers people, don’t forget to always let your manners speak for you.
God bless and keep you and your families and God bless Rivers State.