Journalists from across the country have joined their counterparts the world over to mark the World Press Freedom Day May 3rd as part of their commitment to ensure free media activities in their respective countries. The idea behind the World Press Freedom day is to inform the International community that freedom of the press and freedom of expression are fundamental human rights. The day reminds people of how journalists encounter deaths or face imprisonment to bring daily news to the public. It also gives people the chance to pay tribute to media professionals who have lost or risked their lives in the line of duty.
Different countries and organizations have their own unique way of honoring this day through various activities such as art exhibitions, dinners and book launching etc. Here in Freetown, the Sierra Leone Association of Journalists (SLAJ) has organized a workshop for journalists from across the country to lecture them on the media code of practice and ethics in the discharge of their duties. Followed by a match past nationwide in Bo, Kenema, Makeni and the Western Area.
SLAJ has over the years been agitating to have the1965 Public Order Act and the Seditious Libel laws repealed from the country’s law books. These laws have served as an impediment to effective media practice in the country.