The Solomon Islands Electoral Commission (SIEC) and the Media Association of Solomon Islands (MASI) will hold a workshop tomorrow, aimed at developing a Code of Conduct for journalists covering the National Elections.
The first of it’s kind in Solomon Islands, the workshop will give journalists a chance to have their say on the new Code of Conduct.
It will also be an opportunity to discuss how the SIEC Communications Team can work more closely with the media.
“The media play a vital role in elections and SIEC is pleased to be delivering this workshop in partnership with the Media Association of Solomon Islands,” Chief Electoral Officer, Polycarp Haununu said.
“Journalists have a responsibility to fairly and accurately report on candidates and policies, explain the voting and registration processes and publicize the election results when they are available.”
The SIEC says the aim of the Code of Conduct is to make sure journalists can get access to the information that they need, without disrupting the voting process.
“We want to work together with the media to make sure that everyone understands the next stages of registration and what they need to do right through to Election Day,” Mr Haununu said.
A ‘Code of Conduct for Media and Independent Election Observers’ was developed during the 2010 Election.
However, this is the first time that the media will have direct input into the process of developing the code.
After tomorrow’s workshop, SIEC staff will collate the journalist’s views and compile a draft Code of Conduct to be considered by the Commission.
Once it’s approved, further training will be conducted so that interested journalists can be officially accredited to have access to SIEC sites, press conferences and the latest information.
Both the SIEC and MASI encourage all professional journalists to attend the workshop on Saturday, June 21 at Kairos Conference Centre from 9am.