Let me take this opportunity to say a few things!
First of all, happy Africa Day to all of you!
The Union of Journalists of South Sudan (UJOSS) thanks Egyptian government, the Supreme Media Regulatory Council and the Union of African Journalists for successfully completing the 56th session of training for African journalists.
UJOSS further thanks the above mentioned institutions for extending an invitation to its president to be part of the last week of the training.
Since the time of former president Gamal Abdel Naser, Egypt has always taken action in shaping the role of the media in Africa.
Former president Abdel Nasser used the media to campaign for decolonization of Africa and promotion of the Non Alligned Movement (NAM).
UJOSS believes that in the current geopolitical land scape in Africa where Africa is struggling to understand itself and deal with confusion caused in our continent by others from outside Africa, Egypt has a major role to play in helping the media in Africa set the right agenda.
Unification of Africa, which in my opinion, will happen sooner or later needs people to people contacts such as what Egypt is doing by bringing journalists from various African countries together.
Africans whether from South Africa, the Democratic Republic of Congo or Libya need to regularly meet, discuss issues that affect Africans and possible solutions to those problems. Our problems as Africans are more or less the same, they include; barriers to free movement of people and goods, bad leadership, corruption, foreign interference which at times cause crimes against humanity and war crimes and those who interfere in our affairs do so with impunity.
As journalists we MUST understand that we have a role to play in the current political, social and economic dynamics.
At the time of independence of Ghana in 1956, former president Francis kwame Nkrumah said, “ Independence of Ghana without independence of other African countries was useless.”
Africans need to support each other and Egypt is doing that for our journalists, we thank authorities in Cairo for doing that.
As we head back to our countries, UJOSS wishes each and everyone a safe journey back home and urges all of you to keep the African fire burning.
Oyet Patrick Charles
President- Union of Journalists of South Sudan