A group of 30 Gambian media practitioners is undergoing a three-day training on conflict-sensitive media coverage of electoral campaigns. The training is to provide journalists with an understanding of conflict-sensitive reporting and its relevance in peaceful, balanced, and inclusive elections.
Electoral campaigns across the continent are often changing moments when contenders try to maximize their chances of winning. In fact, running a campaign and competing in elections are often costly, monopolized by a small elite, and often disadvantages women and the youths. The Gambia is not an exception.
Therefore, the training will equip journalists with the necessary skills and knowledge to ask or dig for appropriate questions about controversial, problematic, or at times dangerous issues.
Sait Matty Jaw, the Executive Director for the Centre for Research for Policy Development (CRPD), said laws and regulations should guarantee fundamental freedoms essential to democracy, including freedom of information and expression, and participation.
“Provisions such as requiring government media funded out of public money, to give fair coverage and equitable access to opposition parties help ensure appropriate media behavior during elections.”