Both from today's Post and The National.
Police ‘crashes’ NGO forum
By ELIZABETH MIAE http://www.thenational.com.pg/100207/nation11.htm
LEADERS of four NCD-based NGO groups claimed they were threatened by police while staging a public forum on the Julian Moti issue at Tabari place, Boroko yesterday.
Presidents of Eda Hanua Moresby Philip Kepan, PNG Millennium Good Governance Southern branch Victor Kongop, PNG National Awareness Front Noel Anjo and NCD Informal Sector Youth Association Benjamin Pokapen claimed the incident happened in the morning where armed police officers walked into the arena where the speakers were and ordered them to stop the forum immediately.
They claimed that they were advised by the NCD/Central divisional commander Alfred Reu that such forums could provoke the public to become rowdy and had the potential to become violent.
However, the four group leaders claimed that they were simply holding an awareness forum and did not try to instigate violence.
They were told to formally write to the police commissioner seeking permission to hold such a meeting.
The main topic of discussion at the forum was NGOs and the civil society’s demand that the Prime Minister must resign over the Moti issue.
Government proposes to set media guidelines
THE media industry in Papua New Guinea is to come under the microscope of the Government.
The Information and Communication Department plans to review a policy known as the National Information and Communication Policy (NPIC) which dates back to 1994, to come up with guidelines for the media.
Information and Communication has been split from Private Enterprises and is a separate department, with Kokopo MP Patrick Tammur as minister responsible.
The department’s acting secretary Henao Iduhu announced recently that the NPIC review “is important so that the rules of engagement for the media industry and publishing houses are clear”.
“We must ensure that the media industry abide by professional ethics,” Mr Iduhu said in a statement released during a ministerial briefing with Mr Tammur last month.
“We must ensure that they play the game within guidelines set out by the Government and not allow them to move the goal post. Everybody plays to our rules, to ensure that everybody is a winner.”
Asked to clarify his comments and whether it meant the Government was moving to restrict free speech and freedom of the press by introducing guidelines, Mr Iduhu said this was not what was intended.
“Freedom of media will not be curtailed at all. All I’m saying is it is a two-way thing,” he said, adding the PNG Media Council would be invited to contribute to the review.
He said if the media plays its part and report fairly, accurately and responsibly, there would be no cause for alarm.
Mr Iduhu said the review would start towards the end of the year or early next year when funds were made available in the budget.
Meanwhile, the department was also seeking K1.5 million from the Treasury Department to begin the feasibility study for the introduction of a television station run by the Government.
The National Television Station for PNG would come under the National Broadcasting Corporation umbrella.
Mr Iduhu said a consultant is being sought to undertake the study and to advise the Government on the TV proposal.