The President of the National Communication Council has urged journalists to efficiently play their role as watch dogs of society.
Joseph Chebongkeng Kalabubse was speaking at the close of the National awareness seminar for media professionals on mechanisms of eradicating hate speech in the Cameroonian media.
He summarised the major recommendations of the seminar in a take home message; “we need a lot of education and that education should begin at the levels of basic and secondary education. Also, the media should take upon themselves, the responsibility of educating the public and they should remain the watch dog of the society,” Joseph Chebongkeng said.
This is a very good beginning because we are dealing here with a cross section of the media that regularly animates national life.
The media is a reflection of what every society is supposed to be. So, we want the media to have that social responsibility and moral conscience when providing information to the public which should be filtered through the treatment as we were taught in the profession.”
The seminar was opened by the Minister of Communication, Rene Emmanuel Sadi on behalf of the Prime Minister—Head of Government, Joseph Dion Ngute. The Minister indicated that the 1996 Constitution of Cameroon protects every individual from harassment on grounds of their origin, religious, philosophical or political opinions or beliefs. He added that the National Communication Council which is responsible for regulating the media is tasked with ensuring the respect of social peace, national unity and integrity as well as the respect of the protection of the dignity of persons on the media.
He expressed the wish that the seminar will lead to the emergence of a professional practice that is free from hate speech and disinformation.
Minister Rene Emmanuel Sadi told media professionals to properly and effectively implement the resolutions of the seminar in their respective media organs, as the media has the major responsibility of educating Cameroonians and promoting a peaceful coexistence, social cohesion and peace.
During the event, experts shed light on the impact of hate content on media audience, mechanisms for eradicating and protecting consumers of hate speech on the traditional and social media as well as education as solution to hate language on the media.
Media professionals saluted the initiative which has been described as edifying and enriching .