New era, stop harassing journalists- Makuei
By Wek AtakKacjang
The Minister of Information and Government Spokesperson Michael Makuei Lueth has urged the security agencies to stop harassing journalists.
He said as the country was entering into a new era; referring to the Revitalized-Transitional Government of National Unity (RTGoNU) adding people should forget the past.
“In the past the security has been arresting journalists without warrant from the Ministry of Justice,” Lueth said.
He said media was important in promoting peace and stability in the country if they pass on accurate information to the public.
Lueth made the remarks yesterday during the security sector training in Juba.
The three-day training is being attended by the media, the security personnel and the information sectors in the organized forces.
The security sector training was organized by the Media Authority in collaboration with Journalists for Human Rights (JHR) under the theme “Strengthening media in South Sudan towards professional, vibrant and free media for all.”
However, Lueth challenged the media to uphold to their ethics by reporting accurate and well-balanced stories.
He said the journalists must operate according to the media law and the transitional Constitution of South Sudan.
“The objective of this training was to disseminate the media law in order to understand the relationship between the security and the media,” he said.
On the same note, Makuei cautioned journalists not to abuse the freedom of expression granted to them by the law. “You have the freedom of expression but don’t step on the toes of others because you will get into trouble,” he said.
He said this time any journalist who abuses the freedom of expression must be ready to face trial in court of law.
“Although so many journalists had been arrested in the past but we have not taken any to the court,” he said.
To the security, you just arrest anybody (journalist) which is against the law because if you go ahead arresting journalists you are abusing your own power,” Makuei said.
Lueth called on the media to join hands together with the government in disseminating the message of peace.
He told the security organs that “no security personnel should arrest journalists because journalists have their union and the ministry of Justice to handle those who make mistakes.”
Media Authority is mandated to enforce media standards, receive, investigate and arbitrate on complaints brought against a media house or journalist.