Restriction of press freedoms: Journalists and web-activists talk about it under the aegis of the RFLD 

It is aware that the profession of journalism is one of the promising professions, pledges of a better future and that it is necessary to facilitate to all journalists a free court to exercise their profession that the Network of Women Leaders for Development organized on Thursday, June 09, 2022 a dialogue which brought together media professionals and bloggers from Benin. Organized within the framework of the celebration of the international day of the freedom of the press, the event initiated with the song of bird in Cotonou was held under the torch of a new dynamism towards the future.

A series of intellectual, methodological and systemic activities with a view to finding more or less correct recommendations for a fact-problem, for an object of concern that nowadays constitutes press freedom issues. Such are the substances, the great facts that marked the dialogue between media professionals organized last Thursday by the Network of Women Leaders for Development and its partner CIVICUS. Like a powerful engine of development, the RFLD, thanks to its partner CIVICUS, brought together several media professionals around the theme "journalism under the digital siege". In its 29th edition, the celebration of this day by CIVICUS and RFLD responds to the concern to work for better management of press freedoms in Benin.

For Gloria Dossi Agueh, president of the RFLD during the opening ceremony, this initiative puts “particular emphasis on raising awareness of respect for press freedom and greater protection for journalists”.

Furthermore, aware that "freedom is life and not having it is death", she "invited the participants not to take this high-level dialogue lightly because, he will come up with suitable proposals for a freer and more aware press”

Before the activities were launched, Zakiath Latoundji, of the Union of Media Professionals of Benin, Joel Noumonvi of the Association of Bloggers of Benin and Heulèche Tognonmegni, legal affairs adviser to the RFLD, expressed the wish that this dialogue not just one more, but a real meeting whose resulting recommendations advocate a new dynamism. This is how the president of the RFLD will officially launch the work. Three communications focusing respectively on the emphasis on raising awareness of respect for press freedom, greater protection and respect for journalists and the vital contribution they make to democratic societies, guidelines of the African Commission on Human and Peoples' Rights (ACHPR) and how to protect your data online furnished the activity. According to Zakiath Latoundji of the UPMB, in order to rise to the rank of so-called democratic model countries in terms of press freedom, one of the major steps is to raise awareness of respect for press freedom. .

For the occasion, the legal expert and Head of Youth, Leisure and Sports Service of the Town Hall of Porto Novo Heulèche Tognonmegni presented the innovative theme of his communication "ACHPR Guidelines on Freedom of Association and Assembly in Africa”. The said theme is summed up in an imbibition of young people or other people in the manuals of the ACHPR which confer on professionals indelible rights. During his presentation, he underlined the importance of popularizing these rights in order to improve the conditions for the exercise of journalism and to promote genuine development. With a view to participating in development through an active and collective contribution to improving freedom of the press in Benin, group work has been instituted.

In this second highlight of the day, the participants identified problems, reflected together on proposals intended to paint a good picture of press freedom in Benin. The results of the work were then presented to the plenary by group leaders. According to the group rapporteurs, the values ​​for measuring progress in a country in the field of the press are the quality of the freedom enjoyed by professionals and fairness. Even though, the authorities are still indeterminacy with important but often partially resolved questions, they thought that it is not insignificant to be interested in Benin's efforts to concretize its visions of development and to be able to to be counted among the democratic nations and technically from the point of view of respect for the rights of the actors of the media.

Finally, given the importance of foresight, respect for freedom of the press becomes a necessity and is binding on everyone. To do this, the Network of Women Leaders for Development and its partner CIVICUS do not intend to stop there. They are already thinking of organizing another dialogue next month.

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