www.fesnepal.org
Committed to Social Democracy...
HOME
ABOUT FES
Introduction
FES in Nepal
FES Worldwide
ACTIVITIES
Democratization
Media Development
Trade Union Development
Regional Cooperation
Conflict Resolution
Good Governance
Gender
NEWS/EVENTS
Past Activities
FES in the Press
REPORTS
Annual Reports
Seminar/Workshop Reports
PUBLICATIONS
List of FES Publications
Book Reviews
FES Publications in University Curricula



PROGRAMME REPORT

National Workshop on Media's Role for Drafting the New Constitution

Organised by Press Chautari Nepal (PC)

25-26 July 2008, Birgunj


Background

Following the Peoples Movement 2006, the country has been entered into Federal Democratic Republic (FDR) formally as the Constituent Assembly (CA) members voted against Nepal's monarchy. The CA has also elected the president and vice-president for the first time in Nepalese history. Although, the formation of a new constitution -a big challenge as well as the major demands of April Movement is yet to be settled.

In this connection, civil Society members have also their great contributions for creating their pressure to draft an inclusive and democratic constitution like incorporating the aspiration of various casts, language, gender and classes. Regarding these contemporary issues, press as being a part of civil society representative it can also paid an especial contribution. Realizing this fact, the Press Chautari Nepal (PCN) organized a two day long national level workshop on 'media's role for drafting the new constitution' in Birgunj.

The main objective of the workshop was to mount pressure the government and its concerned bodies to guarantee the press freedom in new constitution and to be drafted it in stipulated time frame.

Participation

Just like to PCN's earlier activities of fighting for the press freedom and quest for journalist's right to inform on behalf of their respective readers, it aims to discuss on contemporary issues like ' media's role for drafting the new constitution'

Its well known that Press Chautari Nepal had organized a hot discussion about the press freedom in the past days. We organized our series of interactions on 'right to information' and ' formation of National Media commission' through out the country. Continuing to our past activities, the PCN would like to interact among the journalists and local level people on media's roles to ensure press freedom in the next constitution. With the aim of crating pressure for incorporating the press freedom in the new constitution, the PCN organized a national level workshop in Birgunj on July 25 to 26, 2008. At the function, journalists from western regions were present by representing their respective districts and various media houses. It's our beginning point. We would like to launch such interaction programme throughout the country as possible.

Opening Ceremony

The opening ceremony of the workshop was inarguated by CPN-UML standing committee member and party's publicity and publication chief Ishwor Pokhrel.

In his opening ceremony speech, he vowed his commitment of ensuring the press freedom in the next constitution that is to be drafted within two years. Stating that CPN-UML was ever in favor of respecting the free and fair press, he instructed his party's CA members to play their constructive role for guaranteeing the press freedom in the new constitution ever in Nepal's constitutional history.

At the opening ceremony, Mahesh Das- central committee member of the Federation of Nepalese Journalist (FNJ), PCN Chairman Shambhu Shrestha and Kishor Shrestha, editor of the Janaastha Weekly highlighted the media's role either deposing the during the king's autocratic coup or in Aprils Movements suppression.

They vowed their commitment that Nepalese press would never be fall down ahead of any sorts of anarchist activities and suppression.

Addressing the opening ceremony they also revealed the fact that the some sort of anti-press and anarchist groups were continuing the incidents of murdering, torturing, torturing, abduction and threats especially in Terai areas. The participants of the workshop have condemned over such serious press violation activities even after the establishments of the republic.

Closing Ceremony

At the closing ceremony, Shambhu Shrestha, editor of the Dristhi weekly and PCN Chairman and FNJ central committee member Mahesh Das presented their respective work paper. Journalist Kishor Shreshta, editor of the Janaaastha Weekly Deepan Chauhan member of press council Nepal and Ganesh Basnet of Channel Nepal TV commented upon the work paper.

Presenting his work paper entitled 'Media's Role for drafting the new constitutiont' Shambhu Shrestha pointed out the need of strengthening the national unity and sovereignty through press as Nepalese national integration was in trap. " Journalist should create pressure in this issues as well. Besides this, pen pushers should be free for covering their views in course of drafting the new constitution," Shrestha said adding, "Political parties should do their best for making a popular constitution as it is a documents of consensus."

Presenting his work paper entitled 'Media's Role for drafting the new constitutiont', FNJ central committee member Mahesh Das said that Mahesh Das emphasized to ensure journalist's right to information in the proposals of the constitution. " Incorporate such legal provision that no one can create any sort of obstruction on journalist's right to information at any pretext." Das said.

Das further commented that Journalist's right to be implemented in practice not only incorporating in the documents. Journalist should not compromise on their rights to making aware to public and themselves as well.

Conclusion

  • The press that played its great contributions for succeeding the April movement and holding the Constitutional Assembly (CA) has more responsibility of mounting their further pressure for drafting the new constitution in stipulated time frame.
  • For stopping the frequent media rights violations and abuses, the CA members should guarantee press freedom in constitutional proposals. But the pen pushers also must be responsible for publishing and broadcasting the fact, free and fair news.
  • Four months have been elapsed of holding the CA elections but the constitution making process is yet to begin. In this connections press should mount its pressure for drafting the new constitution within the stipulated time frame.
  • As the country has been entered in to the Federal Democratic Republic, the media activists must be serious in curse of publishing their news on federalism. With this declaration, some of he anarchist groups are planing to separate our sovereign country as well. Media activists must be more serious for writing news on federalism. If such genuine issues like federalism would be ignored in news, there might be misfortune for Nepalese.
 
Copyright©2001. Friedrich Ebert Stiftung, Nepal Office
The information on this site is subject to a
disclaimer and copyright notice.