Journalists should desist from attacking the country’s efforts to reduce the effects of climate change but rather explain to people the challenges brought by the phenomenon and how they can be resolved.
Information, Media and Broadcasting Services Minister Dr Christopher Mushohwe (pictured) said this while officially opening a journalists’ workshop on climate change reporting in Harare.
In a speech read on his behalf by Cde Alois Chakombo, the acting director of rural communication in the ministry, Dr Mushohwe said climate change effects were being felt by everyone on a daily basis.
“Climate change poses a serious threat to the survival of mankind unless solutions which have been proposed under the Paris Climate Change Agreement signed at the United Nations headquarters in New York this year are addressed as a matter of urgency,” he said.
This is where journalists come in as key drivers in influencing climate change through public awareness campaigns. This workshop is important and a desperatelyneeded timely intervention.
“But our media in the developing world emulates the Western media by dishing out sensational news as a marketing gimmick. “Is that what our people want or deserve? Are we not doing a disservice to our own people at the expense of pleasing our erstwhile colonisers? “Why cant our African journalists remain African, down to earth and serve the interest of our countries? After all, that is what Western journalists do to their own countries.”
Dr Mushohwe added that the role of the media was not limited to pointing out the ills in society although that was important but also to enlighten people to become meaningful players in the development process.
“In my view journalists should help everyone including Government by explaining the challenges and how they can be resolved,” said Dr Mushohwe.