The National Union of Somali Journalists (NUSOJ) held last week various activities, aimed at raising public awareness to mark International Day to End Impunity for Crimes Against Journalists. The event is being implemented every year in Somalia by NUSOJ and its media fraternity.
The main objective of these activities were to stress the need to implement definite measures to counter present culture of impunity through raising the issue in discussions among decision makers, journalists and media representatives.
Activities were also aimed at drawing attention to the issue of impunity and finding ways to overcome it within the Somali context. . In order to achieve this goal, an advocacy campaign was implemented and used different methods and tools such as ,safety training for journalist members, pubic symposium ,TV debate and social media platform interactions to spread the message.
On November 1st, with the assistance of the European Union (EU) NUSOJ conducted one-day training workshop on Risk Assessment and Reach for Journalists, Collection of Violations and Impunity Cases in Preparation of November 2 – Day, 2018 in Mogadishu, Somalia and attended by 18 journalists from different media outlets. See attached pictures of the training.
The specific objectives of the training program were:-
▪ To assess and improve the view of the journalist on the safety of the journalists.
▪ The need of safety for the journalists on duty at the work place.
▪ The need for photojournalists to perform in low profile as some people detest being photographed and show more vigilance
▪ To prepare for drawing the attention of the Somalia government and the public on the importance of the International Day to end the Impunity for Crimes against Journalists (IDEI) 2018.
▪ To raise the concerns of the Somalia media and journalists over the need to improve the press freedom of expression and protection of the safety of the media and the journalists.
▪ To raise awareness on the significance of solving cases of killed journalists in order to reinforce the rule of law and stop the culture of impunity .
On November 2nd
NUSOJ organized a TV debate involving key stakeholders from the civil society, some journalists who had beenb aused, tortured or detained without legal or due proceedings.
The purpose of the debate was to create public awareness on the significance of freedom of speech and how it was necessary to maintain a common consciousness of journalists’s safety.
The debate on Goobjoog TV was initially planned to be one hour, but because of the interest of the debate, the presenter of the program added extra time as participants were keen to contribute to the debate.
A well known civil society activist in Somalia Abdullahi Mohamed Shirwa who was among the panellist said “The violations against journalists in Somalia has to end, and the only way is for the Federal Government and all other Federal Members States to make ending impunity an absolute priority. This means ensuring judicial follow-up. It means strengthening laws, training legislators and law enforcement agencies. It means ensuring quality journalist education and supporting media organisation, including measures that protect individual and freelance journalists,”