Editorial

WE UPHOLD AND CHERISH THE RULE OF PROFESSIONALISM, BUT…..

As a Media House which uphold and cherish the rule of Professional Journalism, we do not  want to get entangled on trivial issues such as the imagined corporate if any, war that has been instigated by one of our ex-opinion writer, Riak Maker through the Dawn Newspaper. Under normal circumstance we would have let it go but that the three articles which have been published by the same newspaper allegedly authored by Maker demands some clarity since they border on libel (we are consulting with legal experts). The Editor-in-Chief of any newspaper the world over is the custodian and become the copy right owner of all materials including advertisements published. He or she has the right to or not to publish. Therefore it is not a guarantee that every article or advert submitted for publication must be put in the pages of the paper. Through his assigned deputies who must consult with him/her regularly, this is the rule in the world of press and we at Juba Monitor are not different. We are avoiding getting involved into innuendoes and non-basic issues which cannot develop the media industry in this country. We have time and again said that we are open for positive business competition as the market share demands. But using opaque to conquer one’s ambition is unacceptable and immoral in all standards of normal life of sincerity. We are not asking for anything special but sending a clear message, let us face the fact. Maker and his backers will soon understand what it takes to survive in the media industry. We are not going to be cored with immoral words or innuendoes based on personality. We know many think that since the former Editor-In-Chief has resigned to join another calling, Juba Monitor can just be a walk-over. We are telling you a big NO and we are yet to know which qualification does Maker hold in journalism if not a jumping opinion writer who is being pushed by others for selfish motive. He should be telling the country where he got his first USD when he came out of prison instead of pointing accusing fingers at others. Maker and his backers, we are ready and watching.

 

Topical Commentary

With Odongo Odoyo

IGNORANCE IS NO DEFENSE IN LAW

Some borrowed English words tell us that “ignorance is no defense” in any situation and should not be used to make the struggling, struggle more than necessary. In this world you should be praising the Almighty for giving you life for 62 years like me who is soon to see his 63 years in this earth with 32 spent in this jargon of ours called journalism. The only good thing l can talk about is how much exposure world-wide it has given me and sometime with my family back in Kenya. I am taking this direction after my usual friend called me on Saturday evening for all l care; ill thought the man was enjoying his leave somewhere in the slopes of Mount Kenya waiting for the much expected general election. I was wrong and SaTP was here in Juba so much worked up. His first word to me on phone was Yaba, l am fed-up how long you are going to restrain us from reacting to this man’s article which is full of back-slashing all the time. Riak Maker had yet again written an article against Juba Monitor staff and one of the editors, a foreigner that was none but me of cause because even the mail he quoted was written to my boss and copied to him by me. This time he went further to insinuate that some media houses were full of foreigners and to him the media houses he mentioned on Juba Monitor and Radio Miraya. In Juba Monitor, l am the only foreigner holding senior position of Managing Editor. As the man in charge of editorial, l have tried very hard to restrain my colleagues from reacting to the ill-formed opinion of Maker. I don’t think l can no longer contain them while Maker continues with his back-slash against his own employer. This man has been an opinion writer with Juba Monitor and even when he came out of prison it was Juba Monitor where he entered first and got his first decent meal. It was here that medical arrangements were made for him to be properly checked from what he knows he was suffering from. This is the hand that welcomed him back to life that he is now calling names. Maker claims that most foreign journalists are CIA spies (l hope he has evidence to this fact) and believe he knows what he is talking about. I am not and will not be a stooge or an agent of anybody except myself.  My contribution to the media industry in Kenya, East Africa, the continent and the world over is self-explanatory. We mooted and put into being African Union of Journalists, then based in Cairo, Egypt which is still functioning with the first secretary general the late George Odiko, God rest his soul. Let us live the world the continent and the region for the time being as Odongo Odoyo a Kenyan Journalist who has been in the field all these years and who has been in South Sudan for almost five years with full knowledge of both Governments. The Kenya Embassy is open for verification, what has been my contribution to the media industry in this country and what legacy can l be proud of when l leave this country although, l want to say here that roots are in this country from birth. I will take you back a little in the mid-80s, where the first concerned journalists who organized for the first time East African Correspondent Association which organized a major press conference at the New Stanley Hotel in Nairobi where the late Dr. John Garang gave major press statement across the world. Those who can still remember we all assembled at the Thorn Tree not knowing where and where Dr. Garang would emerge from where he was incognito and few minutes later we were ushered to the fifth floor of the same hotel. This was to remain a communication channel for the liberators for a long time until the attainment of independence with modification here and there. Many of you may remember Operation Lifeline Sudan and who were the key messengers of information from one destination to the other. What many of you might not know is how the Liberation account was opened in Gigiri Nairobi at the UN Compound. Here you need only to find out who was the key person in the weekly radio programme, the Business Focus, why the E.A Business Times with head-office in Nairobi and a local partner and associated with me, was given the right by the Government to carry yearly supplement for three consecutive years on Independence Day Celebration. Apart from having been the only foreign Editor-in-Chief of a local newspaper competitively recruited, l have gone through the Government approved organs, had a hand in programme development at the state owned SSBC, setting up of government website and setting up of the Juba City council weekly newspaper, the City Review. If this is what Maker want people and the public to take home as a CIA agent, then l leave it to the public. I stand tall and will not be intimidated by any threat as long as l am on my line and does not cross the boundary of anybody, Maker included. This is the truth that will set all of us free. Name calling or insinuations are for wounded rogues.

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