Editorial: Where Were The Journalists?

Other journalists should also have attended to see the facility after the opening.
09 Mar 2019 11:17
Editorial: Where Were The Journalists?
Speaker of Parliament, Ratu Epeli Nailatikau speaking at the opening of the press gallery. Photo: Parliament of Fiji

Mainstream journalists welcome the opening of the new media gallery in Parliament yesterday.

But it is ironic that they were not invited to attend and report on the event. They heard that the reason was there was not enough space and the parliamentary secretariat would send media releases afterwards.

However, a photo of Speaker Ratu Epeli Nailatikau speaking, sent by the Secretariat, clearly showed there was ample space to accommodate them.

We recognise Stanley Simpson was invited in his capacity as general secretary of the Fijian Media Association, which made the original request for the new gallery. That’s fine. But other journalists should also have attended to see the facility after the opening. That would not have been too hard to organise.

The Chinese Government, which funded the project, would have loved their presence and the subsequent publicity.

Read more: Speaker Opens Parliament Press Gallery


International Women’s Day #balance4better

International Women’s Day is a day set aside to recognise with pride the contribution of women in our homes, villages, communities and work- force.
The first International Women’s Day took place in 1911. It was supported by more than one million people. Today the day belongs to all groups collectively everywhere.

The 2019 #BalanceforBetter campaign doesn’t just end on March 8. In fact, the campaign runs all year long. And why not – as we continue to push for women empowerment in all spheres of our national development.

Let’s all help create a #BalanceforBetter in our communities. There is still a lot of work to be done. A fitting example is to get more women into Parliament, given that women make up half of Fiji’s population.

What are some strategies the current women Members of Parliament have in place to pave the way to increase women participation?
An action plan would be fitting with a timeline leading up to the next election.

Finding balance is a collective issue, not a women’s issue. A gender-balanced boardroom, a gender-balanced government, gender-balanced set of employees, gender-balanced sports coverage, gender-balanced media coverage – these are all vital aspects that can make our communities thrive.

Today the Fiji Trades Union Congress with the Inter- national Labour Organisation will be running a work- shop to celebrate International Women’s Day.

The objectives are to promote gender equality through the training of women workers who will be equipped with the relevant knowledge and strategies to become potential leaders and promote gender equality.

Again, this is just one aspect of the overall national objective of creating gender balance in our society.

We all have our roles to play – as mothers, sisters, aunts, colleagues, husbands, brothers and as Fijians.

Gloria Steinem, world-renowned feminist, journalist and activist once said: “The story of women’s struggle for equality belongs to no single feminist nor to any one organisation, but to the collective efforts of all who care about human rights.”

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