BY MYRNE LIVETT
DIRECTOR OF GOVERNMENT Communication Unit George Herming upheld the idea of his office reviving Government Newspaper, as part of the Democratic Coalition for Advancement Government’s (DCGA) Policy.
Herming makes the clarification in light of speculations which claim that the government’s move is to censor media freedom in the country.
“Those allegations are far from the truth,” Herming said “It is not aimed at censorship, it is aimed at increasing information services to the public.
“The proposed newspaper is part of the Government’s policy to increase information services to people.
“Doing so would increase government’s transparency on its programmes and by raising awareness to people,” Herming said.
In a recent article in the media, it was reported that “the move is seen as having the potential to drive the two local newspapers out of business.
“Those assumptions were hopeless and only indicate desperation to try to tarnish Government’s good image,” Herming added.
In relation to that, Former Special Secretary to the Prime Minister, Andrew Mukai, when reached for comment, also pointed out the Government’s attempt “to control the editorial and broadcasting independence of the National Broadcaster SIBC to suit the government’s narrative on issues.”
He said, “Allowing this censorship to manifest in the country, only limits freedom of the press and speech.”
“Every right-thinking Solomon Islander must stand up against any attempt by the DCGA Government to erode fundamental rights in our country,” the Former SSPM said.
“Not doing so only encourages the government to chip away fundament rights incrementally and by the time we come to realise it, it is too late,” He added.