‘Media plays a pivotal role in in promoting transparency and accountability’

Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat general secretary Dame Meg Taylor with media representatives at the workshop in Suva. Picture: SERAFINA SILAITOGA

PACIFIC Islands Forum Secretariat Secretary General Dame Meg Taylor says the media has a role to question and challenge policy makers as well as to report.

With the Forum Economic Ministers meeting (FEMM) to begin in Suva todday, Ms Taylor believes the media plays a pivotal role in in promoting transparency and accountability over Pacific Island issues.

In addressing media reps at the FEMM workshop this afternoon, Ms Taylor said “I don’t see media as just an instrument for reporting activities in the region. I think you have a tremendous role in helping us to fashion coherent and substantive policy, if you want to, by challenging us and asking the questions about what happens to these policies and how they are implemented”.

Ms Taylor said the media was important as it could  increase knowledge around issues in the region such as the Blue Pacific continent and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The SDG’s are huge,” Dame Meg said.

“If you start unpicking it around health (we are seeing) delines in services to community and health services.

“We are also declining in terms of quality of education and on gender our stats are not good at all, on representation in the region on elected institutions.

“So when I say this is about the press helping us along, just don’t take for granted what we say. Challenge it. Debate it with us. Ask us what we really think ….what we said we were going to do.

 

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