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Public debate on the openness of public institutions to media and journalists PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 25 August 2011 00:00

debata_tuzlaTuzla - The improvement of communication between public institutions and media in B&H is solely possible if the programs for the intense education of the public institutions' spokesmen are initiated and if new laws are passed, said the participants of today's debate organized by BH Journalists Association.

The debate participants also emphasized that public institutions spokesmen have no right/competence to provide the information to public without the permission of their superiors and most public institutions have no such individual in charge of communicating with media. There are numerous institutions with no web-site , no usage of electronic communications with media, nor do they reply to the journalists' and citizens' questions sent by e-mail.

Srđan Puhalo, psychologist from Banja Luka, said that the most public institutions spokesmen announce only those information they are authorized by their superiors and therefore are of no use to journalists. Jasna Subotić, journalist form Tuzla, said that media can as well be very unprofessional when delivering the information to the public. "What we have today are free media owners, but no free media." She said: "Unfortunately, journalist deliver news in accordance to the media owners instructions , who often cooperate with the government representatives."

Journalist Bedrana Kaletović noted that the spokesmen of public institutions often represent an obstacle in journalists way in reaching information."Instead of providing us with the information, the spokesmen of public institutions actually stand in our way of reaching it by ourselves, because their bosses wish so. They deliver exclusively positive news, only to magnify its significance later on.", said Kaletović.

The debate participants suggested prompt action on the matter of the intense spokesmen and administrators educational program in the area of communication with media and journalists. It is concluded that law sanctions need to be more severe and rough on those who withhold the information from media and citizens, along with organizing a special educational program for citizens on their right to be informed and on the importance of social courage.

 

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