Saturday, May 03, 2014

Media Freedom for a Better Future: Shaping the Post-2015 Development Agenda #WPFD2014

Some highlights of Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon's briefing at UN Headquarters:
“On this World Press Freedom Day, I call on all Governments, societies and individuals to actively defend this fundamental right as critical factors in achieving the Millennium Development Goals and advancing the post-2015 development agenda,” he says. 
And more:
  • Freedom of expression, independent media and universal access to knowledge will fortify our efforts to achieve lasting results for people and the planet.
  • Kidnapping, detaining, beating and murdering journalists for speaking or writing uncomfortable truths is completely unacceptable in a world ever more reliant on global news outlets and the journalists who serve them.
  • Some 456 journalist have been forced into exile since 2008. And since 1992, well over 1,000 journalists have been killed – nearly one per week. Behind each statistic stands a man or a woman simply going about their lawful business.
  • Social media and mobile technologies offer new tools for accelerating citizen participation and economic and social progress.
  • Media’s watchdog function is essential for holding Governments, businesses and others to account.
John Ashe, President of the UN General Assembly:
When journalists are able to report freely, they support informed citizen participation in political and social processes and promote civic engagement...Our Assembly called upon Member States to promote a safe and enabling environment for journalists to perform their work independently and without undue interference. In this regard, the UN Plan of Action on the Safety of Journalists and the Issue of Impunity is an important multi-stakeholder mechanism. Only by ensuring that journalists can work safely and without fear will they be able to give voice to those who do not have one, tell stories that are untold and help build open and transparent societies.

I say, yes! A free and responsible media is important to shape development locally and globally! Treat journalists right. And journalists-- let's be diligent and responsible in carrying out our duties! 

Quotes source: UN News

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