PAP holds training workshop for journalists in the Southern African region

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready…

The Pan-African Parliament (PAP), the legislative arm of the African Union, is scheduled to hold a three-day training workshop tailored for journalists in the Southern Africa region. The workshop will take place from the 16th to the 18th of May 2024 in Cape Town. The purpose of the training aligns with the broader objectives of the continental Parliament, aiming to address visibility challenges not only in South Africa but also in the surrounding region.

This capacity-building workshop will sensitize media professionals to the Continental Parliament, elucidating its objectives and its significance within the African Union architecture, especially in light of the institution’s 20th Anniversary.

The workshop stems from the understanding that the press remains indispensable as an information conduit, even amidst a dynamic and evolving media and technological landscape. The PAP relies on journalists to disseminate information about its endeavors. Consequently, this workshop seeks to strengthen the relationship between the PAP and the media.

Participants for the three-day training are mainly from the African Parliamentary Press Network (APPN), a Network of journalists and information officers reporting from African Parliaments and National Assemblies. The APPN has immensely helped to improve the visibility of Parliament, especially the Pan-African Parliament. The APPN through its Country Caucuses (national chapters) has consistently reported on PAP affairs and activities. The Network has introduced numerous initiatives such as the PAP media briefing, the PAP Country Delegation Press Conference, and the Weekly PAP radio and TV discussion series to bring the PAP closer to the African citizens. This training therefore seeks to leverage the progress made by the partnership with the APPN and expand its influence to the Southern African region.

Countries in the South African region (SADC Countries) that are benefiting from this training are South Africa, Malawi, Eswatini, Botswana, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Tanzania, Lesotho, DR Congo, Mozambique, and Zambia.

This training workshop is the second in a series of media trainings that are being organized by the PAP to ensure that journalists on the Continent are well informed about the PAP and its mandate, with the next training expected to be organized for journalists from the West Africa region in Ghana.

In the context of the parliamentary environment across the continent, region, and respective individual countries, the various parliaments need to forge lasting relations with the media to ensure that information about their business reaches citizens even in the remotest corners of the continent.

Key officials of the Pan-African Parliament expected to grace the opening ceremony of the media training and network session are the President of the PAP, H.E Chief Fortune Zephania Charumbira, and the Clerk, Ms. Lindiwe Khumalo.

Key topics for the three-day training include Contextual Reporting – Understanding a complex organization and ensuring accuracy, Ethical Reporting in Parliamentary Journalism, How to improve media relations, Entry points for effective media engagement, The role of the media in enhancing reporting of PAP activities.

At the end of the training, a common strategy and an implementation plan are expected to be developed and adopted.

The key facilitator for the training is Ms. Janine Lazurus, a Media Training Expert, with support from Mr. Jeffrey Onganga, Media and Communications Unit, Pan-African Parliament, and, Mr. Gilbert Borketey Boyefio, a Parliamentary Expert and Coordinator of the African Parliamentary Press Network (APPN).