The Independent Journalists Union of Togo (UJIT) and the Federation of African journalists (FAJ) in collaboration with the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) under the UTU Project 2019 held a two -day workshop on "Organising in the Digital media, trade union reform and youth recruitment” in Lome, Togo from 5 -6 November. The workshop brought together 12 young men and women journalists who work online from 6 different West African countries notably Mali, Côte d'Ivoire, Senegal, Burkina Faso, Guinea, Benin and Togo.
The aim of the workshop is to strengthen unions to recruit young journalists and to adapt to the changing economic structures of the media and information sector.
“The digital era has become very important to the work of journalists. With the rapid developments in information technology, information gadgets like the mobile phone, Iphone and computers have all come in handy to facilitate the work of journalists, "said the Secretary General of the UJIT, Mrs. Patricia ADJISSEKU in his words of welcome.
According to Patricia Adjisseku, digital technology has been incorporated into Togo's new press code. She said that, as a journalist, it is important to belong to a trade union organization in order to defend one's rights. The Secretary-General of UJIT thanked the IFJ for its support of the organization of this workshop, while expressing her wish that the two days of training will allow the participants to acquire much experience for the development of the press and their unions in their respective country.
According to Ms. Sokhna DIA, Administrative and Financial Officer at the IFJ Africa Office, the 2016 IFJ Global Survey revealed that "digital journalism is the fastest growing sector, which also attracts many young people with the required digital skills.
"We must be able to convince the majority of young journalists entering the profession that trade unions and trade unionism in general are still relevant and can protect and improve their rights and conditions of work and does not impede their career prospects »
The workshop dilated on issues concerning the security and ethical challenges in the digital media; legislation governing the use of the Internet in French - speaking West Africa; Youth policies in the union structure; Working condition of young journalists; and digital migration and opportunities for young journalists In addition to this, the participants also shared their experiences with regards to the situation of the digital media in their countries as well as their experiences in promoting and developing their unions.
Participants at the end of their training expressed their total satisfaction with the process by indicating that their expectations were largely met.