By Leo Mkhuwala
The importance that journalists covering elections should adhere to professional ethics has attracted a working relationship of Malawi Red Cross Society and Blantyre Press Club who have drilled about 30 reporters ahead of the next week’s national elections.
The training which took the scribes through a number of presentations by the Red Cross Public Relations and Diplomacy Manager, Felix Washon, has been described as “beneficial” in as far as elections coverage is concerned.
BPC President, Blessings Kanache said, the training will aid the journalists in their adherence to ethics and make sure that everything they report during the elections is factual and truthful.
“The training will assist the journalists to avoid sensational reporting that can create some sort of anarchy or bringing confusion and violence into the country,” said Kanache.
On behalf of BPC, Kanache therefore expressed gratitude to Red Cross for bringing in the technical know-how during the training.
According to the organisation’s Secretary General, Macbeth Kanongoza, it is important that the media should be cautious when covering elections by doing their work as it is expected of them.
“If anything negative comes out of your reporting, what follows?” Quarried Kanongoza and continued: “The impact is big, you can get anything from violence to unrest and also disturbances all over, not only localized but even nationally, so it’s very important that you report sensibly by giving matured reports that will promote positive behaviour.”
Malawi Red Cross Society started in 1932 as Nyasaland branch of the British Red Cross.
The organization was founded under the Malawi Red Cross Society Act of 51 of 1966 Parliament.
It was recognized by the International Committee of Red Cross on July 23, 1970.