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SLAJ Calls on Police to Ensure Safety and Security of Journalist Gibril Gottor (PRESS RELEASE)

PRESS RELEASE
Freetown | 30th April 2022
SLAJ Calls on Police to Ensure Safety and Security of Journalist Gibril Gottor
The Sierra Leone Association of Journalists (SLAJ) is seriously concerned about the safety and security of journalist Gibril Gottor and his family residing in Kambia District, Northern Sierra Leone, and is calling for the swift intervention of the Sierra Leone Police.
Gottor reported to us an assassination attempt on him and his family on Friday 29th April, 2022, saying they woke up to the suffocating smell of petrol in their apartment. According to Gottor, the family discovered a plastic bag in the ventilation pipe on their roof dripping petrol, and their back door painted with the highly inflammable liquid.
The journalist believes the attempt on his life may not be unconnected to his ongoing investigation of corruption involving some business tycoons, military personnel, and a host of other influential people in the district.
The Local Unit Commander Kambia District Police, Chief Superintendent Abu Bakarr Magona, reportedly visited Gottor’s apartment in the afternoon to assess the situation but, according to the journalist, no investigator has been assigned to his case although he has made an official report to the Police.
“I am worried for my family and my life. We don’t feel safe,” Gottor told us.
The President of SLAJ, Ahmed Sahid Nasralla, said: “An assassination attempt on a journalist for doing his work is very scary and a serious cause for concern. The Police and other state agencies must defend and protect journalists and other activists who dedicate their lives to fighting corruption in the country.”
SLAJ, therefore, calls on the Police to speedily investigate the matter while ensuring the safety and security of Gottor and his family.
Signed:
Alhaji Manika Kamara
Acting National Secretary General
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SLAJ Appoints Gender Advisory Panel

Press Release
SLAJ Appoints Gender Advisory Panel
Freetown / 6th April 2022
The Sierra Leone Association of Journalists (SLAJ) is a not-for-profit professional organisation advocating for the right to freedom of expression, free speech online, free media, and democratic good governance.
SLAJ recognises that gender inequality is a major challenge in the media in Sierra Leone. While the Association acknowledges that discrimination, harassment, and inequality on the basis of gender are not limited to the media, it wants to make it a priority to deal with these issues within the media.
The media in Sierra Leone is male-dominated, in terms of ownership and representation in leadership positions across individual media institutions as well as in SLAJ and its affiliate bodies.
Out of a total of 718 active SLAJ members across the country, only 170 are women.
Women in the media suffer unequal distribution of assignments in the newsroom. The male reporters are given assignments to cover hard news while female reporters are given soft beats.
Gender-sensitive reporting in the media is also very low.
Women journalists also claim they face sexual harassment and intimidation in the media from their male colleagues and superiors.
These are only a few of the challenges female journalists face.
While SLAJ does not have control over the employment and editorial policies of media houses, the Association wants to support efforts aimed at formulating policies that make the newsroom more conducive for female journalists.
To help it achieve this objective, the Association is hereby announcing the appointment of the following distinguished personalities to serve on its first-ever Gender Advisory Panel. This panel will advise SLAJ on gender issues, and conduct periodic gender audits that inform the way the Association formulates policies.
President of SLAJ, Ahmed Sahid Nasralla, said: “Members of the SLAJ Gender Advisory Panel are volunteers, helping SLAJ and the Sierra Leone media to promote a level playing field for all practitioners irrespective of their gender. We thank the appointees for consenting to serve on the panel, and we hope and pray their contribution will change the narrative for women (and men) in the media.”
The SLAJ Gender Advisory Panel:
Williette P.R.O. James- Chairperson:
Dr. Williette Princess Ransolina Oluwakemi James is a Sierra Leonean journalist, lecturer and Gender advocate. Since 2010, she has interspersed her journalistic work with gender advocacy in the media. Williette has practiced as a journalist for 22 years. She got part of her training in journalism at the Sky High Magazine in Walthamstow, London, and has benefitted from several other media and gender trainings nationally and internationally. She is currently the Assistant Dean of the Faculty of Communication Media and Information Studies at Fourah Bay College, University of Sierra Leone.
Chernor A. Bah- Member:
Chernor Bah is a globally recognised champion of girls rights, global education and youth development. He is the Co-founder and Co-CEO of Purposeful – the first Africa rooted, a global feminist hub for girls activism. At 15 Chernor founded and led the Children’s Forum Network, a mass movement of children who mobilized to demand their voices be included in peace and reconciliation efforts after Sierra Leone’s civil war. In 2012, Bah co-founded A World at School – a global mobilization and campaign organization for education. He has been appointed numerous times by the United Nations Secretary-General and is a frequent speaker and advisor at high-level platforms including the United Nations, The European Union, the World Bank, and major universities around the world.
Naasu Genevieve Fofanah- Member:
Naasu Genevieve Fofanah is an Entrepreneur, accomplished Author, results-oriented international development and Public Administration Professional. She has substantive experience in psychology, gender, education, global public policy and management. Ms. Fofanah has a proven track record of success in offering senior policy advisory services to governments, bilateral and multilateral institutions, NGOs, CSOs on a broad spectrum of development issues. As Special Gender Adviser to the previous Government, Ms. Fofanah spearheaded the Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment national policy in the Agenda for Prosperity (PRSP III). At the Regional level, she served as Vice-Chairperson of the UNECA Bureau on Women representing West Africa. She is a renowned women and girls’ rights activist with several awards to her name.
Joseph ‘Josephine’ Ayamga- Secretary:
Joseph Ayamga is the Country Director of SEND Sierra Leone, an NGO that has done extensive work on women and girls empowerment in the Eastern Region of Sierra Leone. He is widely regarded as the initial champion of women in governance networks and has been able to mobilise more than 36,000 mostly rural women into governance and livelihood cooperatives in the East, South, and Western regions of Sierra Leone. Under his leadership, the NGO has grown exponentially from its initial presence in only Kailahun District to working in eight districts within five years. Ayamga’s work has contributed significantly to Kailahun making history in the 2012 elections as the only district to attain 41% of women representation in the local council. Recently, he has been responsible for establishing the Nyapui School and the Radio as platforms to give voice to women and build the next generation of women leaders. Ayamga is now called Jospehine by women in the Eastern region.
Signed:
Alhaji Manika Kamara
Acting National Secretary General
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SLAJ Recognises Irish Embassy’s Support to Women & Media.

The Sierra Leone Association of Journalists (SLAJ) has presented a Golden Jubilee Recognition Award to the Embassy of the Republic of Ireland in Sierra Leone for their continuous support towards freedom of expression and the empowerment of women and girls in the small West African country.

The award was announced at the SLAJ Annual General Meeting in Bo City in June 2021 as part of celebrations marking the Association’s 50 years of existence but was officially presented to the Embassy on Monday 13th December 2021.

According to the SLAJ President, Ahmed Sahid Nasralla, SLAJ recognises, appreciates, and is grateful for the role played by the Irish Embassy (and other International partners) towards the repeal of Part Five of the 1965 Public Order Act that criminalises libel and free speech.

“We worked a great deal with the outgone Second Secretary of the Embassy of Ireland in Sierra Leone Daire Courtney to achieve the repeal. So we share this historic victory with the Embassy,” said Nasralla while presenting the SLAJ Golden Jubilee Recognition Award to the new Irish Ambassador Claire Buckley and her team.

The SLAJ President called on the Embassy to see how best they could collaborate with SLAJ and its affiliate bodies, especially Women In The Media (WIMSAL), towards building a strong and independent media in the country and also support training relating to women empowerment in the media and generally.

He assured the Irish Embassy that SLAJ would continue to hold the government accountable on issues of national interest and the rule of law, particularly those relating to freedom of expression and human rights across the country.

Meanwhile, Ambassador Buckley expressed appreciation to SLAJ for recognising their work over the years, disclosing that they have supported and would continue to support initiatives toward the protection of human rights, especially in the area of freedom of expression, and more women representation in governance.

Credit: SLAJ Secretariat

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SLAJ Condemns Arrest of AYV Media Guest

Press Release
Freetown | 28th April 2022
SLAJ Condemns Arrest of AYV Media Guest
The Sierra Leone Association of Journalists (SLAJ) has received a complaint from the Africa Young Voices Media Empire (AYV Media) relating to arresting a guest who took part in their Wake Up Sierra Leone morning television program on 26th April 2022.
According to AYV Media, the guest by the name of Mohamed Khan- who is described as the Interim Chairman of Teachers Solidarity, was arrested by the Sierra Leone Police (SLP) just outside its premises on his way out after the program, and that may not be unconnected to Khan’s utterances on the concerns of teachers during the program.
According to the SLP, Mohamed Khan ‘has been inciting teachers to withhold their services from the State using an illegal platform called ‘Teachers Solidarity’ while the Government of Sierra Leone and the Sierra Leone Teachers Union are engaged in negotiations. Police further said that Khan was brought to the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) for questioning, and later released on the same day after also meeting with the Minister of Basic and Senior Secondary Education.
While SLAJ is not interfering with the work of the Police in maintaining law and order, the Association is concerned that such an act of arrest by the SLP has the potential to scare off potential critical guests that AYV Media and other media houses may want to invite to their programs.
“The media provide the platform for access to all shades of opinion even if such opinions are critical of the State or Government and its numerous agencies. That is the bedrock of democracy, and any attempt to clamp down on dissenting views is usually counterproductive. The Police could have waited for another day to peacefully invite Khan for questioning rather than arresting him on his way out of a media program,” said President of SLAJ, Ahmed Sahid Nasralla.
SLAJ is therefore calling on the SLP to respect people’s right to free expression at all times and to adopt less hostile ways of holding citizens accused of incitement other than arresting them.
Furthermore, SLAJ urges the SLP to be proactive with information on the reason(s) for the arrest of citizens by respecting not only the rights of the accused to know but also the public’s right to know.
Signed:
Alhaji Manika Kamara
Acting National Secretary General
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SLAJ PRESIDENT AHMED SAHID NASRALLA ON IWD 2022:

As we celebrate IWD 2022, SLAJ recognises the progress the women of Sierra Leone have made in a lot of areas, including in the media, but we also want to remind everyone that there’s still a long way to go to achieve a level playing field where women and men can compete equally.

We urge women to take advantage of the moment and occupy the chairs on the high table. If the men have occupied all the chairs, come with your own chairs and sit confidently.

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SLAJ Golden Jubilee Membership Approved List 2021

PRESS RELEASE
SLAJ Golden Jubilee Membership Approved List 2021
Freetown: 1st March 2022
The Sierra Leone Association of Journalists (SLAJ) is pleased to announce that the following journalists have been approved as members of the Association after successfully going through the application process and induction ceremonies conducted by the SLAJ Membership Credentials Committee across the country:
WESTERN AREA
1 Alhaji Mohamed Mansaray- Afri Radio-Reporter
2 Alex Michael Koroma- Intern Newspaper
3 Abdul Karim Sesay- Afri Radio-Presenter
4 Abdulai Gbla- GBLA TV
5 Abu Bakarr Swallo- Peak Newspaper-Editor
6 Abu Bakarr Bah- The Vindicator Newspaper
7 Abu Bakarr Kamara- Amza Radio/Reporter
10 Abu Bakarr Thaimu Sesay- The Voice Newspaper
11 Albert Newland- Voice of Peninsula Mountain FM 96.1
12 Alhaji Koroma- The Guardian Newspaper
12 Alim Jalloh- Times Sierra Leone
14 Allieu Bangura- AYV
15 Allieu Lamin Kamara- The Indigenes Newspaper
16 Allieu S. Tunkara- Night Watch
17 Alpheus Rogers- Solution Media Consultancy
18 Alusine Joseph Mansaray- Afri Radio-Reporter
19 Amara Kargbo- SLENA
20 Aminata Fofanah- SLBC
21 Ann-Marie Lovina Gegbai-Jalloh- Kingho Investment Company
22 Aruna Patrick Kamara- SLBC Freetown
22 Augustine S. James- MRCG
24 Baindu Mustapha Bawoh- Awoko/Student
25 Brima Kamara- SLP Media One
26 Cecil Cole-Showers- Guardian Post
27 Chindu Sreedharan- Bournemouth University (Associate Members)
28 Crispina Lois Taylor- Radio Lion Mountain/Dpt Station Manager
29 Cyril Donald Barnes- Embassy of Sierra Leone in the State of Kuwait
30 Daniel S. Boima- Reedemer Radio/Presenter
31 Dauda Koroma- Independent Observer
32 Desmond Darlington Sogbor Afri Radio
33 Eastina M.B. Taylor- BBC Media
34 Edward Alicious Renner- World Vision SL
35 Elfrida Johnson- Women’s Voice Newspaper/Reporter
36 Emmanuel Alfred Samura- SLBC Reporter
37 Emperor Bailor Barry – Justice FM 98.5
38 Fatmata Q. Turay- Afri Radio
39 Fayia J. Moseray- Peak Newspaper/SLENA
40 Feima Sesay- Public Review/Reporter
41 Foday Moriba Conteh- Calabash Newspaper
42 Francis Hinga Murray- Judiciary Dept PR
43 Gibrilla Elongima Kanu- Prime Times Newspaper
44 Hassan A Jalloh- UNDP (Associate member)
45 Hassan I. Conteh- Night Watch Newspaper
46 Hassan Yankkees Koroma- Nationalist
47 Ibrahim Alusine Kamara- Salone Compass
48 Ibrahim Kabba Turay- Concord Times
49 Ibrahim Sangba- News Watch Newspaper
50 Isaac Sowa- SLBC Snr Producer
51 Isatu Mayah Kamara- Glow Newspaper
52 Ishiaka Sannoh- MRCG
53 James C.B Kamara- Manneh Editor A-Z Newspaper
54 Jeremiah Kargbo- Station Manager Redeemer Network
55 John John Whitfield- Head of Newsroom Afri Radio
56 Jonathan Turner- SLBC Reporter
57 Jonette-Ann M. O Greene- MRCG
58 Joseph Abu Kamanda- Forum Newspaper
59 Joseph S. Turay- SLBC Reporter
60 Julian Koroma- SLBC
61 Kelvin F. Kamara- Radio Lion Mountain
62 Kemoh Saidu Sesay- Watch Newspaper
63 Lawrence Williams- Publisher Freetown Post
64 Lucinda E. Orielly- Voice Peninsular Radio-Presenter/Producer, Continuity announcer
65 Mabinty Magdalene Kamara- Editor Politico
66 Mamadu Bailor Bah- Star Line Radio F/T Correspondent
67 Mary Isha Kamara- SLENA
68 Margaret Mariama Sengeh- Editor SLBC
69 Mariama Sesay- Premier Newspaper
70 Mariama Suma- SLBC Reporter
71 Mariatu Esther Kabba- BBC Media Action
72 Marie Esther Samura- SLBC Sport Reporter
73 Mark Thompson- CTN
74 Mohamed Gbassay Kamara- PFMU-Comms Officer
75 Mohamed J. Bah- AWOKO Newspaper
76 Mohamed Kelfala Fofanah- Gleaner Newspaper
77 Mohamed Lamrana Jalloh- SLRSA-Comm Officer
78 Mohamed Massaquoi- Press Attaché
79 Mohamed Momoh Sesay- A-Z multi media-Reporter
80 Mohamed Osman Bangura- Capitol Times-Proprietor
81 Morlai Kargbo- Epic Radio
82 Muctar Koroma- Mercury International Radio
83 Mustapha Dumbuya- Public Review Newspaper
84 Mustapha Kamara- Gleaner Newspaper
85 Nandaywa Thoronka- SLBC-Reporter SLBC
86 Osman Sesay- MRCG
87 Patrick Sallia- SLBC-Reporter
88 Patrick Yatta Conteh- Radio Mount Aureole Producer
89 Philip Makavore- The Executive Newspaper
90 Philip P Brima- BBN Technician/Production/Continuity announcer
91 Precious A.A. Smith- PAL Online Television
92 Pricetta Williams- Press Attaché Ghana
93 Rev Dr Victor S. Suma- Commissioner IMC
94 Rev Cornelius Henry Coker- Mercy TV
95 Siaka Wusha Conteh – Consultant
96 Samuel Jeremiah Kargbo- Sky Times Newspaper
97 Samuel Saio Conteh- Sierra Leone Police Media
98 Sheku Putka Kamara- Capitol Staff-Editor
99 Sia J. Senesie- Orator Newspaper
100 Sidique Fofanah- Station Manager Radio Mount Aureol
101 Simity Admire Neneh Kamara- Radio Maria
102 Sonia Jaffal- Presenter SLBC
103 Sorie Ibrahim Kamara- SLBC-Reporter
104 Sulaiman Juldeh-Bah- Editor-Unity Newspaper
105 Sulaiman Karim Sesay- AWOKO Newspaper
106 Tilly J. Barrie- Editor, SLBC
107 Usman Bah- MRCG
108 Valerie Hambra Macarthy- Comnet Media
109 Victor Jones- SLBC Presenter
110 Yangie Deborah Sesay- Afri Radio/Reporter
111 Yvette Cole Smith- SLBC Freetown
112 Zainab Sunkary Koroma- Media One Center-Presenter/Producer
EASTERN REGION
1 Allieu Sajuma- Radio Mao/ Kailahun
2 Amadu Sajuma- Radio Moa/Reporter
3 Amara Abdul Martin Foday- Reporter-Kamboi Agric Radio
4 Aminata Conteh- SLBC Kono
5 Dauda Kamara- SLBC Kono Station Manager
6 David L Bassie- Station Manager Radio Nongowa 101.3
7 Francis Gbandaque- SLBC Kono
8 Foday Nabieu- SLBC Kono
9 Hallie Andrew Sahr- Kamboi Agric Radio 92.5 FM/Presenter/Reporter
10 Idrissa Sheku Bangs- Voice of Kono/Station Engineering/Reporter
11 Isata Mabinty Koroma- SLBC Kono
12 James Samai- Station Manger SLBC Kenema
13 Joshua Saa Petiquio- SLBC
14 Lahai Farma- Manager Voice of Lower Bambara
15 Mariama Bah- Kamboi Agric Radio/Reporter
16 Mohamed Sedie Mansaray- Station Manager Kamboi Agric Radio 92.5
17 Mohamed y Jalloh- Voice of Kono
18 Moriba Bockarie- Star Line Radio 98.5
19 Munya Bawoh- Engineer/Reporter
20 Musa Bockarie- Assist Program Manager Voice of the East Kenema
21 Sahr Daniel Koroma- Voice of Kono
22 Sahr Jimmy Fofanah- Program Manager-Radio Nongowa
23 Sahr Sheku SLBC Kono- Translator
24 Senesie Mary- Reporter AYV/Soft FM
25 Sesay B. Ansumana- Kamboi Agric Radio/Reporter
26 Suleiman Abdulla- Radio Moa/Kailahun
27 Surmarine Thompson F.- Jawie Delight Community
28 Susan Kumba Kamanda- Freelance
NORTHERN REGION
1 Yusuf Moseray Suma- Hope FM 93.3
2 Edna Ngegba- Radio Maria Sierra Leone Makeni
3 Margret Misor Mansaray- Radio Bintumani
4 Mohamed Alusine Daffae- Cat radio Farming 106.7
5 Mohamed Belloh Dukuray- Kombra media/Health reporter
6 Mohamed Koroma- 89.5 Radio Shallom Kabala
7 Mohamed Marrah- 89.5 Radio Shallom Kabala
8 Paul Kamara- Radio Maria Sierra Leone/Voice of Wusum
9 Sahr Paul Aruna- Manager Falaba Radio
10 Sarah Mansaray- 89.5 Radio Shallom Kabala
11 Umaro Saidu Turay- Radio Mankneh 95.3fm
12 Umu Thoronka- SLBC
13 Abdul S. Conteh- Shalom Radio (Kabala)
SOUTHERN REGION
1 Abdul Banya- Kiss Radio 104.1 Presenter
2 Augustine Brewah- All Out Radio-Station Manager
3 Beatrice S. Bundor- Radio New Song
4 Bintu Sia Foday- AYV
5 Brima Fullah- Voice of Faith 89.3
6 David Lebbie- Radio new Song Bo
7 Diana Veronica Fillie- SLBC Bo
8 Esther Neppor- SLBC Bo
9 Evelyn Kargbo- SLBC Bo
10 Fodei Jaiah Kamara- Zimmi Radio
11 Hassan Taylor Kabia- SLBC Bo
12 Jamiru Kebbie- Classic Radio
13 Jibao Stephen Coombe- Classic Radio Bo
14 Mariatu Massaquoi- IMC
15 Mustapha Mansaray- Radio Wanjei 101.1 Pujehun
16 Patrick C. Blake- Classic Radio
17 Paul Kamara- Radio New Song Bo
18 Ralph S. Sesay- Njala University
19 Sallaymatu Naomi Conteh- Kiss 104 Bo
20 Soriba Samura- SLBC Station Manager Bo
21 Suaibu Joe Kallon- Classic Radio Bo
22 Sulaiman F. Fofanah- Zimmi Radio
Signed:
Alhaji Manika Kamara
Acting Secretary General
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SLAJ Recognises Irish Embassy’s Support to Women & Media

The Sierra Leone Association of Journalists (SLAJ) has presented a Golden Jubilee Recognition Award to the Embassy of the Republic of Ireland in Sierra Leone for their continuous support towards freedom of expression and the empowerment of women and girls in the small West African country.
The award was announced at the SLAJ Annual General Meeting in Bo City in June 2021 as part of celebrations marking the Association’s 50 years of existence but was officially presented to the Embassy on Monday 13th December 2021.
According to the SLAJ President, Ahmed Sahid Nasralla, SLAJ recognises, appreciates, and is grateful for the role played by the Irish Embassy (and other International partners) towards the repeal of Part Five of the 1965 Public Order Act that criminalises libel and free speech.
“We worked a great deal with the outgone Second Secretary of the Embassy of Ireland in Sierra Leone Daire Courtney to achieve the repeal. So we share this historic victory with the Embassy,” said Nasralla while presenting the SLAJ Golden Jubilee Recognition Award to the new Irish Ambassador Claire Buckley and her team.
The SLAJ President called on the Embassy to see how best they could collaborate with SLAJ and its affiliate bodies, especially Women In The Media (WIMSAL), towards building a strong and independent media in the country and also support training relating to women empowerment in the media and generally.
He assured the Irish Embassy that SLAJ would continue to hold the government accountable on issues of national interest and the rule of law, particularly those relating to freedom of expression and human rights across the country.
Meanwhile, Ambassador Buckley expressed appreciation to SLAJ for recognising their work over the years, disclosing that they have supported and would continue to support initiatives toward the protection of human rights, especially in the area of freedom of expression, and more women representation in governance.
Credit: SLAJ Secretariat.

Marking International Day To End Impunity For Crimes Against Journalists: SLAJ Signs MoU with Security Sector to Ensure Safety of Journalist

Security Sector heads and SLAJ President pose with copies of MoU

The Sierra Leone Association of Journalists (SLAJ) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the
Security Sector, comprising Office of National Security (ONS) of OAU Drive, Tower Hill, Freetown; the Sierra
Leone Police (SLP) of George Street, Freetown; the Republic of Sierra Leone Armed Forces (RSLAF) c/o
Ministry of Defence, State Avenue, Freetown; the National Fire Force (NFF) of AJ Momoh Street, Freetown;
the Sierra Leone Correctional Services (SLCS) of New England Ville, Freetown; and the Central Intelligence
and Security Unit (CISU) of OAU Drive, Tower Hill, Freetown.

The signing of the MoU climaxed a Roundtable Dialogue between SLAJ and the Security Sector marking the
International Day to End Impunity for Crimes Against Journalists 2nd November 2021.

The MoU commits both parties to maintain law and order and ensure the safety and security of journalists at
all times.

SLAJ President Ahmed Sahid Nasralla

SLAJ President, Ahmed Sahid Nasralla, said:

“This is the start of constructive engagement with the Security Sector in a bid to address the perennial
problem of assault of journalists by security officials during political and presidential functions. This dialogue
gives us an opportunity to understand, respect, support, and strengthen each other’s role in the functioning of
our democracy.”

All security sector heads present at the round table dialogue welcomed and applauded the initiative and urged
journalists to equally respect the role of the security sector in the maintenance of law and order without which
the work of the media will be impossible.

Security Sector Heads and SLAJ President signing MoU

The Inspector-General of Police, Ambrose Sovula (Ph.D.), said:
“This is history-making, and I want to commend SLAJ for initiating this kind of engagement with the security
sector. We are all partners and there is a need for us to complement each other’s roles. We urge journalists to
be professional. I pledge the SLP’s commitment to this MoU and I will ensure every police commander across the country receives a copy of this MoU to inform the police officers under their command.”

See the full statement of SLAJ President here: Statement of SLAJ President at Round Table with Security Sector

See details of the MoU here: Details of SLAJ & Security Sector MoU