49 Journalists Unfairly Sacked

The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) is shocked and disappointed to hear that 49 journalists have been sacked without due cause in Nepal.

According to IFJ affiliate the Federation of Nepalese Journalists (FNJ), 49 journalists working for government-owned Gorkhapatra Corporation were sacked on Thursday July 26.

Some of the sacked journalists had been working at Gorkhapatra Corporation for up to 11 years.

IFJ Asia-Pacific Director Jacqueline Park said it was disturbing that the mass lay-off appeared to have been motivated by political interests.

“According to our sources, the journalists were dismissed without any genuine evaluation of their work, and on the basis of their political interests,” Park said.

“Meanwhile, employees who were active against the April 2006 democratic movement were reportedly promoted,” she said.

The IFJ joins with the FNJ in calling for Nepal’s Ministry of Information and Communications to apologise and reinstate the sacked journalists immediately.

“Following the defeat of the royal coup the international community has high expectations of the Nepal Government to do everything in its power to create a democratic media environment that will serve the whole Nepalese community," Park said.

It is of great concern that the Ministry of Information & Communications is attempting to control the news in this very crude way.

The IFJ urges the Minister to immediately reinstate these journalists.

“In attempting to silence every hint of dissent against itself, the Nepalese government only serves to undermine its attempts at democracy,” she said.

For further information contact IFJ Asia-Pacific on +61 2 9333 0919

The IFJ represents over 600,000 journalists in more than 115 countries