Following its launching on Thursday, 25 October, the Newspaper Publishers Association of The Gambia (NePA) has conducted its inaugural general meeting where an executive committee has been elected to run the affairs of the association for the next two years in line with the dictates of its constitution.
At the meeting held on Friday 2nd November, Mr Samuel Osseh Sarr, the editor-in-chief of Foroyaa newspaper has been elected president; Mr Sheriff Bojang, the managing director of The Standard newspaper – secretary general; Mr Baba Hydara, co-proprietor of The Point newspaper – treasurer; Ms Fatou Y Sanyang of Daily News – spokesperson.
As the name implies, NePA is the association of newspaper publishers in The Gambia. For a long time, publishers, who are the employers, were part of the Gambia Press Union, which, in fact, is a trade union for our employees. Therefore, the establishment of NePA will correct this anomalous situation.
NePA will promote access to and dissemination of information through a free, independent and pluralistic press;
Serve as a forum to promote the common interests of its members;
Nurture and deepen media freedom as a democratic value in all our communities and at all levels of our society;
Monitor violations of freedom of speech and the media and to encourage exposure as well as redress of such violations;
Promote media diversity in the interest of fostering maximum expression of opinions;
Promote professional and ethical standards in newspapers;
Promote female ownership of newspapers in The Gambia;
Help aspiring and practising journalists acquire or develop new skills and enhance professionalism through media education programmes;
Advocate for the provision of adequate resources and the enforcement of rules and regulations guaranteeing professional freedom and independence of all newspapers funded by public authorities;
Encourage government to ensure transparency and openness in public media administration and to enact, amend and/or repeal laws for the purpose of ensuring maximum freedom of information;
Defend and strengthen media freedom through all available institutions;
Advocate for the creation and enforcement of a Freedom of Information law, among other things.