State media outlet editors will be appointed by officials
“The government has the power to decide who it appoints to manage public institutions. It supports elections and accepts their results when it comes to the editors in chief of these
institutions. The dates of elections, however, are to be adjusted by each institution alone. In the meantime, editors will still hold office.” As reported by Binaa News Agency, attached to the ruling Islamic Ennahda Movement in Tunisia.
Najiba Hamrouni of the Syndicate of Tunisian Journalists said that it was agreed during a meeting of the union with Abdul Razzaq al-Kilani, the minister in charge of communicating with the National Constituent Assembly and Reda Al Kazdaghli, the minister of information and communication, to retreat from the recent appointments.
According to Hamrouni, it was agreed to adopt the principle of election in media institutions. In case of these commitments not being fulfilled, journalists would continue their struggle for independence and freedom of the media sector. Journalists’ reservations about the appointments will be submitted to the Prime Minister Hamadi Jebali for consideration, by Tuesday, She explains.
The co-ruling part, The Congress for the Republic, has released a statement calling the government to reconsider these appointments, stating that the party “ will not accept these appointments, because among those who were appointed are figures involved in the blackout, disinformation and propaganda to tyranny and corruption that took place in the former regime.”
The statement explains that, “this approach contradicts with the party’s principles that requires taking a stand against all who have gone wrong, including journalists who have supported the dictatorship."
Hundreds of journalists and civil society activists have held a protest at the Government Palace Square in Kasbah to object to the recent appointments and to condemn the attacks on a number of journalists last week in front of the Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research.
This protest was confronted by another in support of the government, where dozens of government supporters gathered and raised slogans against freedom of information. Fearing clashes, security forces deployed around the Government Palace and separated the “two protests.” Many journalists have denounced what they called the “method of counter-protesting in response to the struggle of journalists.”