PAKISTAN: Journalists to boycott official functions
RIUJ officially condemns media restrictions, calls for unity in fight for freedom of the press
Monday, November 5, 2007
Islambad ---The Rawalpindi-Islamabad Union of Journalists (RIUJ) has condemned curbs on media through new ordinances issued by the Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (Pemra) in the wake of the imposition of emergency in the country.
The condemnation came on Sunday at an emergency meeting at the Rawalpindi-Islamabad Press Club's camp office. The meeting decided to boycott all official functions on Monday (today) and vowed to launch a struggle for freedom of the press.
The meeting was attended among others by Pakistan Federal Union of Journalists (PFUJ) president Huma Ali, PFUJ secretary-general Mazhar Abbas, Rawalpindi-Islamabad Press Club president Mushtaq Minhas, RIUJ president Afzal Butt and senior vice-president Shahryar Khan.
Speaking on the occasion, Huma Ali termed the restrictions on media as highly condemnable saying the journalists would continue their struggle till complete freedom of the press. He said a meeting of the presidents and secretaries of the journalists bodies throughout the country had been convened on Tuesday to devise a future course of action.
He demanded of the government to withdraw the Pemra ordinances.
PFUJ secretary general Mazhar Abbas said the government, by promulgating new Pemra ordinance, had exposed its tall claims regarding freedom of the press. He said the Pakistan Broadcasters Association (PBA) had already prepared a code of conduct but even then the present regime was adamant to muzzle the media as it could not tolerate any criticism.
Syed Talat Hussain underlined the need for unity among journalists at this critical juncture to thwart rulers' conspiracy to undermine power of the media.
Date Posted: 11/5/2007