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Review of 2015 election reporting and peace building project

1 Apr, 2016
The review revealed that media coverage during the 2015 elections was of a high ethical standard, but political reporting has since degenerated.

In September 2015, MISA Lesotho held a workshop to review the progress and impact of its Media Peace Building and Conflict Reporting Now project. In addition to reviewing progress, the meeting, which was funded by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), analysed the impact made through the intervention and discussed potential issues for follow-up.

The one-day meeting was held at Lehakoe Recreation and Cultural Centre and drew 40 participants from both private and public media.

During the review process, attendees at the meeting agreed that media reporting during the 2015 elections was of a high ethical standard. The quality of reporting was also aided by MISA’s strong coordination, as it had deployed 30 trained journalists throughout the country. The election reports were carried live and simultaneously on nine radio stations throughout the country.

However, following the elections it appears that there has been regression in reporting quality. This is attributed to the fact that those journalists who were reporting on the 2015 elections are not currently responsible for political reporting in their respective media houses. It has become clear that the scope of the training would have to be extended to include more journalists and also ensure that MISA Lesotho is enabled to continue its coordination efforts.

The Media Peace Building and Conflict Reporting Now project jointly funded by the Open Society Initiative for Southern Africa (OSISA) and the UNDP in Lesotho, was a five-month intervention strategy to prepare journalists to report more effectively during the February 2015 elections. The project ended in June 2015.

Other exciting capacity building initiatives took place during the year including a five-day training workshop on investigative journalism in October.

The UNDP has also indicated its further support for more interventions to improve post-election capacity building of Basotho journalists.

For more information, please contact:

Tsebo Mats’asa, National Director

MISA Lesotho

Tel: + 266 2232 0941

E-mail: misalesotho@gmail.com

MISA Lesotho

About MISA

The Media Institute of Southern Africa (MISA) was founded in 1996. Its work focuses on promoting, and advocating for, the unhindered enjoyment of freedom of expression, access to information and a free, independent, diverse and pluralistic media.

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