The leadership of the Reporters Association of Liberia(RAL) says it’s major concern now is how to seek the welfare of reporters across Liberia as part of the new leadership three years mandate.
Appearing on ECOWAS Radio platform ” Front Page” the Secretary General of RAL, Mark Mengonfia said the RAL’s leadership major concern focuses on how to source funding from media partners including training of its members across the Country.
According to him, in any profession, retained trainings or refreshers workshops are all necessary ingredients in keeping on pad with said profession.
He indicated that” It is clear and not a secret that there are some reporters who saw their close friends practicing the journalism profession and decided to become journalist without going through a full training”
He went on to say” don’t get me wrong, I am saying that not all of our reporters are untrained, we have lots of good reporters who are contributing to the media landscape of Liberia, they also need refresher training as well to help them move on positively”.
The RAL SG said that their leadership is planning to do among other things general meeting with membership, visit reporters in the counties and set up counties coordinators.
When asked how they ( RAL) intends to upkeep the institution, SG Mengonfia said” we will write project proposals to partners, work with the Press Union of Liberia and other institutions who believe in reporters’ welfare for supports.”He noted.
According to him, they at the level of RAL leadership after taking over saw the need to create a database of reporters of Liberia.
” We have started the process of the database, we are also in the process of creating a mailing system that will allow our colleagues share stories and other information with each other including setting up an active website for reporters works to be published on” Mengonfia added.
Speaking to the alleged threats against freelance journalist Kolubah B. Akoi, RAL SG said they are working with the PUL to have it address.
” Madam Clarke instructed me to communicate with him last night which I did. What we can say now is that since reporter Akoi is in Monrovia, let him stay around until we lay the allegation to rest. Our leadership is rather preventing the problems before it occur than waiting for it to happen before we release statement” Mengonfia.
Also speaking during the radio appearance was RAL financial secretary general, Hannah Geterminah who promised to safely keep and protect funding of the institution.
” We will make sure that we first get our article of incorporation from the government of Liberia after which we will open a bank account for the institution” Madam Geterminah said.
She went on to say” it is not good to keep an organization money at your house, doing so well easily lead to corruption. Two persons could easily convince each other and use the money,but when it is placed in an account, it needs an approval from the leadership in particular and the membership in general.”
Speaking additionally, she indicated that during their induction ceremony which was held on February 7,2020, they anticipated to have raised the amount of 12 thousand United States dollars in other to enable them get them started with their activities ” We did not succeed in raising the amount, what we got was a little over 1 thousand dollars USD”
According to her, with the determination she sees in the leadership of Madam Cecelia Clarke, President of RAL, VP, Willie Tokpah, and the rest, she is of the strongest believe that they will work in the supreme interest of reporters of Liberia.