Somaliland: Four days Media Development Indicators Workshop Opens-SOLJA

A four day media development indicators workshop which is a framework for assessing media development opened today facilitate by Somaliland journalist association SOLJA and funded by UNESCO.

Mr. Mahmoud Ahmed Jama, the Somaliland journalist association SOLJA speaking at the opening ceremony said, “This project seeks to assess the media environment in Somaliland utilizing UNESCO’s Media Development Indicators. An assessment of the media environment in Somaliland will provide information on the current status of the media and assist media practitioners, policy makers, institutions of learning; and, civil society organizations in promoting international standards of the profession. Specifically, it will assist academics in providing the relevant courses necessary for media practitioners in today’s world.

Hon Abdillahi Mohamed Dahir Ukuse , Minister of Information and National Guidance speaking at the venue said, “The government of Somaliland is committed forge robust working relations with journalists and members of Somaliland media fraternity through training so as to enhance the credibility of local press through supporting professional media development opportunities, and through the good communication of standards.

Hon Abdillahi Mohamed Dahir Ukuse further urged journalists gathered at venue to deter from using unethical methods in their reporting of events instead they should utilize the wide range of option available to them to do background research through technical innovation from new approaches in storytelling.

Hon Hassan Awale Ay’nan, Somaliland Member of Parliament and the chairman of parliamentary social affairs committee praised the current SOLJA leadership for taking the organization to whole new level.

Hon Hassan Awale Ay’nan, Somaliland Member of Parliament and the chairman of parliamentary social affairs committee speaking at the function said, “SOLJA as an organization is lucky to have time on its side, in terms of knowhow, highly skilled human resources .Since the new team by Mr. Xuuto took the helm of the organization we have being able to foster good and robust working relation and on behalf of the parliamentary social affairs committee would like to thank him, that been said I pledge to assist SOLJA whenever the need arises.

The MP added, “Regarding the issue of Somaliland (Press Law No: 27/2004), I hope the parliamentary social affairs committee and SOLJA shall cooperate and interact more in the future so as to solve this matter.

Mr. Hamze Khaire the facillator elaborating on the objectives of the day media development indicators workshop said, “This paper defines indicators of media development in line with the priority areas of the International Programme for the Development of Communication (IPDC): promotion of freedom of expression and media pluralism; development of community media; and human resource development (capacity building of media professionals and institutional capacity building).

The paper suggests five major categories of indicators that can be used to analyse the media development of a country. Each category is broken down into a number of component issues which in turn contain a series of broad indicators. These indicators are an analytic tool designed to help stakeholders assess the state of the media and measure the impact of media development programmes. They are diagnostic tools, not commandments – conceptualised with the purpose of assisting media development programmes, not imposing conditionality.

This document will be tested and adjusted on the ground by its ultimate intended users – the journalists and news organizations, and citizens’ groups working to strengthen media on the local level.

Among the other notable speakers at the event were the solicitor -general ,the director of Academy of peace and development  and the director general in the Ministry of Post and Telecommunications.

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