The International Federation
of Journalists (IFJ) welcomes the open dialogue between the Ministry for
Information and Communications and leading journalists’ organisations in Nepal after a
constructive meeting between Information and Communications Minister Krishna
Bahadur Mahara and the Federation of Nepali Journalists (FNJ) on October 21.
During the meeting Dharmendra Jha, President of the FNJ,
an IFJ affiliate, presented the
Minister with a 15-point memorandum on media related issues under Nepal’s
newly elected democratic government.
The memorandum emphasised the imperative for a guarantee for press
freedom to be an unalterable element of the country’s newly developed
constitution, the FNJ reports.
Among other issues raised at the meeting were the establishment of a commission
to investigate the murder, abduction, torture and violence against journalists since the
2005 Royal Coup, the implementation
of the Working Journalists Act, and
the re-structuring of media law to ensure editorial independence from political
interference across the country.
freedom and independence of the media are crucial for Nepal’s success under its new government,” IFJ Asia-Pacific
dialogue between the government and leading journalists’ organisations like the
FNJ is the best way to ensure that any review of media freedom in Nepal
incorporates the major issues facing journalists.”
meeting follows the successful application by the National Union of Journalists
(NUJN), also an IFJ affiliate, on
September 12 for the public release of a committee report on minimum wages
under the country’s Right to Information Act.
directed his ministry to post the report on the Ministry’s website after Ram
Prasad Dahal, Secretary of the NUJN,
made an application for its public release on September 5.
report, which was submitted to the Government on August 28, recommends
implementation of the Working Journalists’ Act 2007, and that the minimum wage
for media personnel be at least 4000 rupees (US$57) a month.
of positive interaction between the Ministry of Information and Communications
and leading journalists’ organisations like the FNJ and NUJN
is a welcome change from a culture of violence against the media in Nepal,” said IFJ Asia-Pacific.
congratulate both the FNJ and the NUJN
for setting the agenda for the country’s journalists at this important
transitional time in Nepal’s
information contact IFJ Asia-Pacific on +612 9333 0919
represents over 600,000 journalists in
120 countries worldwide