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Office of the President (OP)
Office of the President Press Statement on Recent Deliberati...
21/04/10

This past week the Media Advisory Council held an ordinary meeting chaired by the Minister responsible, the Hon. Lesego Motsumi.

The Media Advisory Council, which reports to the High Level Consultative Council (HLCC), is a forum of media industry stakeholders that meets routinely to discuss and hopefully resolve issues of common concern.

As with other HLCC sector meetings, the deliberations of the Media Advisory Council are not open to press coverage in order to facilitate free and candid exchange.

In this respect it may be further noted that those who attend the Council do so as representatives of interested media wide organizations, e.g. BOCCIM (Media Sector), the Editors' Forum, MISA-Botswana etc., rather than on behalf of individual media houses or publications.

In the above context this Office would not, under normal circumstance, wish to comment on the Council's deliberations. We, however, feel compelled to do so in order to correct certain inaccuracies that appeared in a newspaper report ["Motsumi accedes to fresh look at media organs" in Mmegi 15/4/10]. 

Contrary to what was alleged in the article there was no discussion during the Council meeting of holding "fresh elections of the Complaints and Appeals Committee of the Press Council in order for the organ to begin operations." 

What Council members did discuss and agree upon was that an inclusive forum should be convened where concerned stakeholders would, without prejudice, collectively interrogate the Media Practitioners' Act of 2008. 

The goal of the meeting would be to share perspectives in order to reach a common understanding of the Act's content and probable implications, including any areas of agreement and outstanding concern or disagreement. 

In this respect, the Hon. Minister expressed the hope that such a process would help to re-build bridges among and between media stakeholders and Government.

 

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