Friday, August 7, 2020

Who Should Be Given Credit Regarding The Opening Of Gambian Society?

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QUESTION OF THE DAY

During the first republic there was no television station. No non state radio station had authority to broadcast divergent views and dissenting opinions. The state owned media was under the full control of the state and divergent views only featured during elections for short intervals.

The second republic established a television station with the state media fully controlled by the executive. Divergent views features at longer durations during elections. During the impasse every radio station that chose to broadcast the statement of the spokesperson of the Coalition was closed down.

The Coalition had established a media committee in order to disseminate its messages and exploited every opportunity to speak on the non-state media. The state media was under the full grip of the outgoing president. The beginning of the revolution of the media started during the impasse and the social media and the non-state media did everything to keep the people informed. The international media joined them to keep the air waves for people to know what was happening in the country. The culture of media freedom continued after the interim president took charge. Today social media and non-state media are expanding their coverage of divergent views. Despite the occasional insults and unconventional assaults against the integrity of persons no one can doubt that the National Assembly is exercising greater control over executive excesses and the media houses are ensuring greater accountability of representatives to the people. Nobody can stop this trend.

All Gambians are to be credited for this new wave of openness of Gambian society. Hence those who explore new ways of exercising their freedom should do so in a peaceful and purposeful manner so that we ensure that we preserve a gain of a life time that nurtures freedom and democracy.

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