IFJ Holds Conference on the Media and Globalisation



International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) in collaboration with the Eastern

Africa Journalists Association (EAJA) and the Southern Africa Journalists

Association (SAJA) concluded today a two -day conference on the “Effects of

Globalisation on the Media Industries in Eastern and Southern Africa in

Johannesburg, South Africa,. The Conference brought together 22 journalists and

trade union rights leaders from Eastern and Southern Africa, to deliberate and

explore the current negative trends utilised by media conglomerates, as well as

the challenges that globalization generates.


“This meeting wishes

to draw attention to the media conglomerates in Eastern and Southern Africa who

do not consider the plight of journalists, despite the huge profits they are

making.”, said Gabriel Baglo, Director of the IFJ Africa Office, speaking at

the opening ceremony. “Our unions are critical in shaping and setting a

progressive agenda for their members and to ensure that they fulfill their professional

responsibilities to the general citizenry” he said.  He called on the unions to be more vibrant and

vigilant in defending the interest and welfare of their members. ‘We should

never leave the media agenda entirely on the hands of the employers” he



The unions in

the continent, he said, are still struggling to recruit more membership into

the unions especially bringing on board female journalists.  The resource mobilization as well as the

daily battle that we have to fight in relation to the obnoxious legislation

that are continuously passed in many countries, with the sole aim of

suppressing press freedom.   However, the

globalization issue has become very pertinent and we cannot wait any longer for

it to be addressed.


The Guest

Speak at the Opening Ceremony, Dr. Dumisani Moyo, Media and ICTs Programme

Manager at OSISA, said that the topic of the conference is very timely, as this

affects all of us. Globalisation has many faces and ramifications including the

technological, cultural, economic and political aspects”, he said.   He commended the Survey that has been presented

on the effects of globalization in South Africa, Zimbabwe, Zambia and Swaziland

as quite outstanding and called on the IFJ to ensure that a publication comes

out of this survey to shed light on the challenges and effects of globalization

in the region.


The representative

of the Director of the FES Trade Union Competence Centre in South Africa, Gred

Botterweck commended the subject of the Conference and highlighted that a lot

of work has been done on the effects of globalization on the mining industry,

agriculture and others but nothing much has been done on the media. Botterweck

opined that the working conditions of journalists should be looked at as a

critical factor in the globalization context, as more and more journalists are

becoming freelancers.  These journalists

he said, are not employed and hence do not have any social benefits.



President, Felile Moholi, said that the role of the media in the enhancing

democracy and good governance cannot be over emphasized.  The media, she said must be supported in

order for it to perform its duties. She called on the unions to remain vigilant

in defending the interest of their members, most especially under the enormous

threats of globalization.


Similarly, the

Program Coordinator of the EAJA, William Onyango Oloo, said that the effects of

globalisation has serious consequences on the media and journalists in eastern

Africa. He said that the media conglomerates have a disdain for labour laws and

have continuously exploited journalists, by actively undermining the

unions.  The unions he said have be

completely weakened and in the event had lost their vital members.


The Conference

and the regional associations in a declaration have called on the unions to launch campaigns to raise

awareness on the effects of globalisation, especially on job security and

working conditions, and sensitise members on ILO Conventions on the right to

freedom of Association and to collective bargaining.


The Declaration also called on the Africa

Media Initiative (AMI) and the Africa Media Leaders Forum (AMLF) to give

attention to the effects of globalization in Eastern and Southern Africa and to

promote social dialogue in the media industry by respecting the rights to

unionize in the work place to Collective Bargaining.



more information contact the IFJ at  

+221 33 867 95 86/87


IFJ represents more than 600.000 journalists in 134 countries