Journalists and Civil Society Organizations working in the media, democracy, and governance landscape in West Africa are entreating ECOWAS to prioritize the development of the media in the sub-region.
This call was made at a 2-day forum organized by the Media Foundation for West Africa in partnership with the West Africa Democracy Solidarity Network (WADEMOS) from October 18-19, 2022.
Presenting action points for consideration by the ECOWAS at the event, the group expressed worry that despite efforts by the regional body at improving democracy and good governance in the sub-region, there are inadequate strategies, framework, and policies to guide the engagement between ECOWAS and the media. It, therefore, proposed that ECOWAS should have a fully functional directorate of communication and also establish a press corps to cover and report on all activities of the Commission.
Addressing participants at the conference, Dr. Eyesan Okorodudu, Head of Democracy and Good Governance, Political Affairs Directorate, ECOWAS, disclosed that his outfit has begun rolling out policies intended to improve the relationship with the media.
Dr. Eyesan stated, “If we embrace ethical journalism, it gives a lot of credence for ECOWAS to see the rationale in working with you as a media space or entity.” “There’s the need to build public trust between ECOWAS and the media,” Dr. Eyesan Okorodudu added.
The conference which brought together over 100 participants representing civil society working to promote good governance, free speech, press freedom and democracy in West Africa discussed media freedoms, the impact of democratic recession in the sub-region.
Here are some pictures and videos from the event