9 February 2012

South Sudan: Parliament Wants Cabinet to Present Media Bill to Them

Juba — As the relations between the security personnel and journalists becomes source of mistrust of Media from the legislative body the National Legislative Assembly yesterday resolved that the Executive Arms of the Government should submit the media bill to the Assembly for deliberation and approval as laws as an attempt to control the Media.

The urgent call on the Cabinet to submit media bill was generated by the manhandling of a reporter Mading Ngor Akech who host a morning show called "Wake up Juba" at Bakhita Radio FM.

On Monday Akech and the security personnel in the Assembly squabbled over sitting on the Chamber and the issue was raised by Members of Parliament in the August house after which the Speaker later promised investigation to be done though the outcome of investigation announced yesterday dwelt on security side not involving the journalist's part.

Following the investigation, Akech was banned from attending the Assembly's session and sent away yesterday when he attempted to attend the session about his matter.

The Assembly unanimously resolved that they need the Executives to table the bill in the Assembly and among the resolution was that the Assembly would campaign in the website to denounce the news reports of a journalist reported by mass media to have been "beaten".

The Parliament charged Akech ten incidences which he denied.

The Parliament in a rare ever hottest debate condemned the Media for "not" reflecting what they said but adding their salts.

"From 2011 up to now we have passed 40 laws but we did not consider article 24 which talks about Freedom of the Press but the Media bill has not yet come from the Executive to the Assembly and when it is presented it would not take time before it is passed and we urge that the Executive bring to us this bill," the Deputy Speaker Daniel Awet Akot said.

There were also threats from the Parliament that they would sue The Citizen for a piece of opinion written by its Editor-in-Chief Nhial Bol in his straight talk column. Meanwhile the Parliament would hold a press conference today in its premises on the same matter.

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