In commemoration of World Press Freedom Day, the Trinidad and Tobago Publishers & Broadcasters Association has expressed its gratitude for the sacrifices made by journalists who put their lives at risk in the line of duty.
“We mark World Press Freedom Day this year during turbulent times, as the world stands fixated on Russia’s invasion of the sovereign nation of Ukraine. Journalists around the world risk their lives daily to keep nations informed and, sadly, some have given their lives for this cause.”
The TTPBA noted while the Ukraine crisis appears to have captured the world’s attention it is not unique to journalists as every year journalists visit war-torn countries, putting their lives at risk to bring a voice to the tragedies they see. These countries and their stories don’t always get the same profile but it is not for a lack of effort from the journalists that are at risk.
World Press Freedom Day, observed annual on May 3rd, is a day of support for media which are targets for the restraint, or abolition, of press freedom. It is also a day of remembrance for those journalists who lost their lives in the pursuit of a story.
Speaking to this year’s theme – “Journalists Under Digital Siege” – the TTPBA, in its statement said, “In an age of fake news or where everyone with a smart phone or computer thinks they are a journalist, we would do well to remember true journalism. In an age where state control of media and the narrative, and by extension its people, we would do well to remember the importance of Press Freedom.”
It said Russia gives us an insight into what happens when press freedom is non-existent – a majority of a country believing they are in a legitimate struggle over Ukraine, as the state controls the narrative and silences, by any means necessary, the dissenting voices. This is why a free press is so important.