Speaker questions media ‘agendas’

Speaker questions media ‘agendas’

THE Speaker of the National Assembly, Theo-Ben Gurirab, laid into the media and non-governmental organisations when he opened a conference of the Namibian Institute for Democracy at Swakopmund last week.

Gurirab questioned the motives and ‘agendas’ of the media and claimed that he knew of incidents where NGOs had been involved with the media in causing alleged widespread mayhem by using innuendo and blackmail techniques in stories. “I have personally witnessed the media destroying elected heads of state or government, undermining stability through collaboration in assassinations or by conducting of espionage,” he said.”I know of life-threatening incidents caused deliberately through name-calling, or by an innuendo in a sentence inserted in a story as a form of blackmail.”He said Government and the media should work together like ‘Siamese twins’ when it came to issues of national interest.Turning to NGOs, Gurirab said it was important to know where they got their mandate to represent society, who funded them, and whether they upheld the Namibian Constitution and accepted the present political dispensation in the country.He also asked who was responsible for monitoring civil society to ensure accountability.”I have personally witnessed the media destroying elected heads of state or government, undermining stability through collaboration in assassinations or by conducting of espionage,” he said.”I know of life-threatening incidents caused deliberately through name-calling, or by an innuendo in a sentence inserted in a story as a form of blackmail.”He said Government and the media should work together like ‘Siamese twins’ when it came to issues of national interest.Turning to NGOs, Gurirab said it was important to know where they got their mandate to represent society, who funded them, and whether they upheld the Namibian Constitution and accepted the present political dispensation in the country.He also asked who was responsible for monitoring civil society to ensure accountability.

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