Fight for free media requires continuity

Centre for Civic Education (CCE) congratulates 3 May, World Press Freedom Day, to all media and media employees in Montenegro. Role of the media in the development of a democratic society, through free and responsible informing and creation of critical thought in the society, is irreplaceable. In this respect, the authorities are also obliged to ensure a favourable working environment for all media and journalists, without the pressures and any other form of censorship.

Montenegro welcomes this year’s World Press Freedom Day with an highly politicised and polarised media scene, numerous unresolved cases of attacks on journalists, media and their property, as well as with an outdated and incomplete legal framework, especially in the part related to the possibility of government’s influence on media and media market, but also to challenges in the transformation of RTCG into a genuine public broadcasting service. Uninspiring framework for the development of media pluralism and professional journalism, as well as the overall environment for the work of journalists, cause uncertainty and jeopardise the freedom of expression.

Great challenge lies ahead of the Montenegrin society in terms of the promotion of free media that exercise responsible, fact-based reporting and reject official manipulations. It is in the interest of public to have the media that can preserve their independence and remain persistent in spite of the obvious political and economic pressures and influences, that are free to address the issues related to corruptive affairs, abuse of political power, as well as of every form of violation of human rights, and consequently to contribute in the establishment of institutions which would be in the service of citizens in a society where all are equal before the law.

Fight for the freedom of media and high standards of professional and objective journalism is incessant in every society, because it is simultaneously the fight for a more open and tolerant society.

Through its programme activities, the Centre for Civic Education (CCE) will continue the fight for free and independent media, especially in the part of identifying and advocating the prevention of inappropriate influence of authorities on the editorial policy and reporting of media through selective and opaque financing, as well as in contributing in transformation of the RTCG into genuine public broadcaster in service of every citizen contrary to current state of affairs where it does not reflect the pluralism of opinion in Montenegrin society.

Ana Vujošević, programme coordinator