The information minister Ebrima Sillah has met with the leadership of the Gambia Press Union on Monday over issues relating to media freedom in the country.
The President of the GPU, Sheriff Bojang Junior, told journalists following a meeting with the minister that the GPU will continue to be proactive in their engagements with authorities to ensuring media freedom in the country.
Bojang led his executive to meet the Minister of Information, Ebrima Sillah on Monday, October 22. The meeting touches on several issues including challenges of access to information in the country.
After the closed door meeting, the minister appreciated the courtesy call and renewed government’s commitment towards media freedom.
“The new management (GPU leadership) thought it wise to meet me and discuss the issues that are relevant to them including the media law reform processes that have been going on and other specific issues in the profession.
It was a very fruitful discussion and I made it clear about the government’s continuous interest in the progress that has already been made. I assured them our commitment to cardinal principle for the freedom of the media and freedom of the journalists to access information especially public information,” he said.
Sillah said ensuring journalists’ access to relevant information helps the Government in creating an enlightened citizenry.
“We want to ensure that we have good working relationship with media. As a government it is in our interest to see that the media works independently and freely in this country,” he said.
He assures continuous collaboration between the government and the union to advance the course of media workers in the country.
“We have seen that compare to before, there is a lot of access to information but when it comes to information coming out quickly and at the right time there is still a challenge,” Bojang told journalists.
Bojang is hopeful that such challenges will be sorted out. He urged the government to make sure journalists don’t only have access to information but have access to speedy and accurate information from the government.
“We are leaving this meeting embolden, hopeful and optimistic that the way forward and the future of relationship between Gambia Government and Gambian media will be healthy and will move from strength to strength.
We won’t be complacent and we won’t sit down and fold our hands because there is good will. We will watch out. We will continue to ask tough questions. We will continue to hold the government to account and then hoping that there won’t be a moment in which dissent will be crossed like before,” Bojang added.