SSBC journalists vow to disseminate peace agreement and 'expose spoilers of peace to the public’
Radio and television journalists from the South Sudan Broadcasting Corporation (SSBC) have pledged to support the recently-signed revitalized peace agreement by exposing those who work against the text of the agreement.
“It is our responsibility as media to carefully run stories to reconcile the society in implementing the peace agreement,” James Magok, the Managing Director of the Corporation said, adding, “It is also our duty to expose the spoilers of peace to the public.”
Mr. Magok was speaking at a workshop organized by the United Nations Mission in South Sudan’s Communications and Public Information Section. The workshop sought to increase awareness among the Corporation’s journalists on the UN Mission’s mandate and the Status of Forces Agreement, which governs its operations in the country.
During the workshop, the Mission distributed copies of the revitalized peace agreement to journalists from the national broadcaster, in line with its role of supporting efforts to achieve durable peace.
Accordingly, the journalists were challenged to disseminate the contents of the agreement to the public, both to reduce fear and build confidence among citizens so they can support its implementation.
“Let us have and own it – to educate and inform the public about what is in the agreement, so as to end the suffering of the citizens,” Rejoyce Samson, a female journalist from SSBC’s television section said, showing her colleagues a copy of the revitalized peace agreement.
About 50 male and female journalists, participated in what they referred to as ‘a very enlightening workshop’.
“The United Nations Mission in South Sudan can access areas we as national journalists cannot reach, to know about what is happening in other parts of the country,” Susan Emiliano, another female reporter, said referring to the motivation behind her attendance of the training.
Harnessing the expertise of different sections in the UN Mission, including HIV/AIDS, Gender, Political Affairs, Legal Affairs, Human Rights and Civil Affairs, presenters explained to the journalists what the mission is doing in South Sudan, which clearly changed the way some of them viewed the Mission and its work.
“When you know about somebody, you will be able to cooperate with him/her in a very responsible and friendly way. But when you don’t know him, it will be difficult to work with him/her,” said Cosmas George, the Corporation’s director of training, referring to the Mission’s presence in South Sudan.
In his remarks, the head of the Mission’s Community Outreach Unit, Hiroyuki Saito, reiterated the UN Mission’s continuous engagement and support to the South Sudan Broadcasting Corporation as a government institution, in efforts to build durable peace in the young nation.