• August 8, 2023

No Democracy Without a Free Press – Bio  

No Democracy Without a Free Press – Bio  
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By Foday Jalloh

President Julius Maada Bio has said in Freetown that there is no democracy without a free press.

President Bio last Thursday August 3, 2023, made the statement whiles delivering the State of the Nation address, during the State Opening of Sixth Parliament of the Second Republic, in the Well of Parliament, Tower Hill Freetown.

Speaking on progress made this far in the areas of press freedom, President Bio observed that for democracy to strive in any country, the press should be free to access the information needed to hold duty bearers accountable in the discharge of their responsibilities in the day-to-day governance of the state.

President Bio therefore registered his profound appreciations to the media for role played prior, during and even after the June 24 polls, as well as in the country’s whole democratic process.

He informed that journalists now have no libel laws which used to criminalize offence them in court, because of their reports. President Bio disclosed that journalists have a regulatory body, the Independent Media Commission which is fully capacitated to conduct regular checks on journalists’ activities.

The media, he said is the fourth pillar of government with the responsibilities of holding authorities accountable, do their work professionally with responsibilities, which is why his administration is trying to ensure that his ministers meet public interests.

President Bio said Sierra Leone is moving upwards in terms of democratic consolidations, registering commitment towards a free press.

He reassured the media of his timely support to enhance national cohesion, as the media has the tendency to break you and even the wider society. “So as a president I dove my hat to them to show free, fairness, and imperiality during the execution of their duties. President called on all to work based on national interests for the benefits of all Sierra Leoneans rather than personal gains.

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