Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Ethiopia shake up after protests, BBC News

Ethiopia's new information minister: 'State media is paralysed'

In the discussions about Ethiopia's new ministers some of the focus has been on the ethnic make up of the cabinet.
At the forefront of the recent wave of protests has been the complaint that some ethnic groups - the Oromos and the Amharas- have been excluded from the political and economic developments in the country.
Two key posts have been given to ethnic Oromos: Workneh Gebeyehu is now foreign minister and Negeri Lencho heads the communications ministry.
As part of the job Mr Negeri, who up to now ran Addis Ababa university's school of journalism, will be running the state media outlets.
For an insight into his views on the state-controlled media we can turn to an interview that he gave in 2013.
He recalled a conversation he had with the journalists:
I asked those journalists hired by the state media how they differ from the privately hired ones, and the difference was visible. 'Since we are in the government media we have to promote developmental polices, and that is all about what to do,' they replied.
So, it looks pretty paralysed, and they tend to be a mouth piece for the government, or like a spokesperson for the government, since their editorial policy is to carry out state policies and strategies."
The state dominates the media scene in Ethiopia, it controls the only domestic TV channel, all but one of the radio stations and most of the newspapers.
Under the current state of emergency, the viewing of certain TV channels broadcast from abroad has been banned.

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