Friday, 7 August 2015

Rwenzori Journalists Trained on Election Reporting & Broadcasting to prepare for the upcoming 2016 Elections

ToroDev in partnership with Rwenzori Journalists forum held a training where 60 Journalists from the 15 local radio stations located in the seven districts of the Rwenzori Region were able to attend. The training offered journalists with basic skills needed in covering the whole process from pre-election to post-election, looking at the various stages of the electoral process, elements of an election and the areas where distortions can occur, either through deliberate actions or poor organization. The selection of the participants at least 80% was from the radio stations and 20 % from other media.  The selection of participants was 50% female and 50% male. The two days journalists training workshop was conducted on 28th - 29th July 2015 and the training was facilitated by two consultants from Uganda Radio Network.

Participants during a training session at St. Joseph's Inn Virika on 28th July 2015
The executive director ToroDev Mr. Baguma John stone Kumaraki urged journalists from the 15 local radio stations of the Rwenzori Region to engage local and political leaders to deal with issues that affect grass root community members. He was speaking at the opening of a 2 days training of Journalists at St. Joseph’s Inn Virika. The journalists trained included news reporters, talk show hosts, print and news editors who acquired basic skills that will enable them to cover election processes in a fair, balanced & non-partisan way.

ToroDev Executive Director Mr. Baguma Johnstone Kumaraki giving  remarks during the official opening of the training
 The training was facilitated by Mr. Kaija Wilson Akiiki and JK Imokola both from Uganda Radio network.
“Sometimes we go to the source to verify information not access/capture information and in some cases many journalists tend to tell a national story and forget a community story. If you have decided to be a journalist, please be but do not be a journalist and at the same time a politician, your story reporting will automatically be biased’’ said Mr. Kaija Wilson Akiiki             a facilitator from Uganda Radio Network.

 Mr. Kaija Wilson Akiiki,  a facilitator from Uganda Radio Network during a training session
Meanwhile JK Imokola a trainer with Uganda Radio Network asked the trainees to look at ideas the candidates are putting forward and then give voters a voice by looking at their issues too. He urged the trainees to avoid personal issues of candidates, stay clear from unsubstantiated claims, know your rights & responsibilities and let us try to balance our stories with minority views & opinions because the biggest defense in reporting is your professional ethics as a journalist.

“The  acquired knowledge from the training  will help me to act in a professional way of covering, all aspects of elections especially during the campaign, registration of voters, candidates and parties, the important elements that needs media attention during election eve, the Election Day, the day after and during the vote count.( in pre-election, election day & post election period)”. Said Tusime Francis the coordinator of Rwenzori Journalist Forum.

We are grateful to SIDA, DRT, NED, SPIDER, CIPESA & ICT4DEM for the financial and technical support.

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