Friday, 16 June 2017

Opinion -- “Cameroon’s Communication Council Should Sanction CRTV.”

The International Journalist wonders why the NCC has not delivered sanction following Adele Mballa’s Mess as she anchored an evening edition of the CRTV News.

Every journalist must have at one point in his/her career committed an error by not verifying information or certain happenings. While some of this errors can be “justified” especially if you are verifying news around your immediate environment, the rush to announce a “scoop” on Macron’s new government should be sanctioned by Cameroon’s National Communication Council for the following reason.

Macron’s new government should be the easiest information to be verified even by a “baby” journalist. You check the website of the French presidency, French National broadcaster France 24 and other international media outlets that are closer and can easily verify this information better than CRTV.

In as much as the NCC can sanction the private press for defamation and broadcast of fake news, announcing a fake French government is a buzz which has ridiculed not only the image of CRTV journalists (I must admit there are some there who are my models) but has ridiculed the image of all Cameroonian journalists working either at home and abroad. In the same light the NCC can sanction CRTV or at least warn them for any lopsided reporting or propaganda-which is as much a professional error as defamation and gombo journalism.
Opinion -- “Cameroon’s Communication Council Should Sanction CRTV.” 
CRTV should appoint a new Managing Editor to bring back the trust of the public. The structure has been unable to cover happenings around its immediate environment and is so anxious to talk about the election of Macron or his new government as if Macron could succeed if he was a Cameroonian. The reports should be contextualized to focus on whether it is possible for the likes of Macron to evolve in Cameroon’s political landscape where grey hair is the main criteria for evolution.

News presenters should be following up the news. Experienced hands should “calm down” and cooperate. In as much as years of experience are necessary, sometimes we have so many years of experience in doing the wrong thing and being a Director of Information we should be able to check, check and check again.

Of course everyone can make errors. We could make errors about happenings in Cameroon. Sometimes it’s difficult verifying Boko Haram attacks etc. We can understand if you announce that Boko Haram has attacked an area just to discover it never occurred. But rushing to announce SCOOP on Macron’s government is not the role of CRTV.

Adele Mballa’s Mess Explained: The seasoned journalist was suspended from going on air following a rather surprising move she made during the Monday May 15, evening news cast on the CRTV.

Adele Mballa, who is presently the Director of Information at the Cameroon Radio and Television (CRTV), had announced during that particular edition of the News that France’s newly appointed Prime Minister Edouard Philippe, had rendered public a list of members of government to lead the French nation.

Afterwards, the suspense became total as everyone was questioning how CRTV could get in touch with such information which wasn’t given as a proposed prediction but as a fact.

But unfortunately, the French Prime Minister instead made public a list of members of his new government the following day, Tuesday May 16, 2017.

It became quite clear to all that the list proposed by the journalist during that days highly viewed edition of the News was quite inaccurate.

The internet through social media and some private news agencies were quick to react with many raising the incompetency of the “fake” CRTV with “gombo minded journalist”.

On the contrary some other readers who understood the error said it was a professional fault which could happen to any other person.

The entire debate raised by that incident drew attention and reaction from all over the world.

Meanwhile, France’s embassy in Yaounde petitioned the Ministry of External Relations Of Cameroon to get more explanation as to what happened for Adele Mballa to produce such approximate and inaccurate information on the composition of the French government.

According to a source at the CRTV, the error came from a journalist working with the news production team. The said journalist whose name was undisclosed had gotten the list from social media, had written it down some few minutes to the end of the news cast for Adele to read it out.

Many analyst say, in reaction to what many term as a gigantic mess, the Company judged it necessary for her and a series of other crew members part of the production that day to be suspended.

The seasoned journalist in an official interview granted a local newspaper denied claims made on social media she has been suspended.

As a result of all that, she was replaced by Evelyne Owona Essomba, another CRTV’s French broadcaster.
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