The West Africa Democracy Solidarity (‘WADEMOS’) Network has charged media organizations and journalists to support the work of pro-democracy actors in halting the decline of democracy within the West Africa sub-region.
The Network, which comprises over thirty-five (35) civil society organizations (CSOs) and pro-democracy actors within West Africa, believes the media is one of the key institutions that can contribute to addressing the growing threats to peace and stability in the ECOWAS region.
Addressing journalists from across West Africa, during a virtual press briefing on Friday, September 2, 2022, Kevin Kop’ep Dabugat, Coordinator of the WADEMOS Network, extended a hand of invitation to the media and underscored the need for them to partner with the cause of advancing democratic norms in the sub-region.
“WADEMOS is a citizen’s response to anti-democratic tendencies, which is in line with ECOWAS’ vision to move from an ECOWAS of States to an ECOWAS of peoples. You [the media] are a key source of information for many people, and that makes you a very important institution. WADEMOS has members in all West African countries, and since the media gathered here are also from across the sub-region, we believe you are an important stakeholder, and we will like to work with you beyond our launch or this virtual press briefing,” he said.
“Press freedom is one of the benchmarks used to ascertain democratic credentials of a country. And that revolves around the work you do. WADEMOS has several thematic areas of interest, and one is to ensure press and media freedoms are safeguarded. So, you have a huge role to play as journalists in advancing our democracy, and that is why you have to be interested in advancing the cause of democracy,” he added.
The virtual press briefing, which was attended by journalists from across the sub-region, served as an opportunity for the Network to interact with media practitioners about the recent happenings within the sub-region. It also allowed journalists to understand the structure and objectives of WADEMOS and the impact it seeks to have. The journalists also had the opportunity to ask questions and seek clarifications on several issues pertaining to issues within the sub-region and the operations of the Network.
The Network launch is set to take place from September 14-16 in Accra, Ghana. In attendance will be high-profile dignitaries from the African Union, ECOWAS and other regional and sub-regional bodies.
Download the French document
Download English Document here