Media coverage of election campaign ignores political debates and opposition

first_img Reporters Without Borders continues to be dissatisfied with the Belarusian media’s coverage of the campaign for Sunday’s parliamentary elections after seeing the report of the monitoring conducted by the Belarusian Association of Journalists (BAJ), a Reporters Without Borders partner organisation, between 5 and 20 September.According to the BAJ report, political programmes and debates continued to be ignored by the media and all the observers have criticised this glaring absence.“We regret that there has been no improvement in the media coverage of the campaign for the legislative elections, especially this was a chance for Belarus to normalise its relations with the international community,” Reporters Without Borders said.The final weeks of the election campaign were no different from the earlier ones. The BAJ has accused the state-controlled media of “totally depoliticising the election and marginalising political programmes and alternative candidates, while privately-owned publications are unable to fill the gap because of their limited distribution.” Media coverage has been limited to explaining the technical aspects of the polling and the way the Central Electoral Commission (CEC) works. As a result, Belarusian voters are not able to take an informed decision about the candidates.According to the findings of the BAJ’s monitoring, the state media focused on the activities of President Alyaksandr Lukashenko, the CEC, the local authorities and foreign observers. The president was the only person named by the Homyel Regional State Radio in its election coverage.The BAJ gave a cautious welcome to the CEC’s decision to rebroadcast the campaign spots of all the candidates. But the effect of the measure was limited by the fact that many of the spots were re-transmitted at times when there are relatively few viewers.The Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe’s observers have also issued a report criticising the state media. It regretted that there was no coverage of candidates’ campaign speeches and the media focused on the election’s technical aspects.The OSCE report, issued on 19 September, said: “Media coverage, both on the national andlocal level, has been almost exclusively focused on procedural aspects of the election process. Most media, predominantly state-funded, have paid extensive attention to the president, as well as to other state authorities, including the government and the CEC, rather than on the role of the parliament or the candidates.”Meanwhile, problems have been reporting in the early voting which is being conducted during the five days prior to Sunday, the main election day.When Yuri Dziadzinkin, a reporter for the independent daily Narodnaya Vola, went with his press card to polling station No. 398 in Minsk, electoral officials told him he could not take any photos because the head of the polling station had forbidden it. CEC secretary Mikalai Lazavik explained the ban as being due to the journalist’s poor “human relations” with the polling station’s staff. Follow the news on Belarus BelarusEurope – Central Asia News News May 28, 2021 Find out more September 26, 2008 – Updated on January 20, 2016 Media coverage of election campaign ignores political debates and opposition RSF at the Belarusian border: “The terrorist is the one who jails journalists and intimidates the public” Russian media boss drops the pretence and defends Belarus crackdown Receive email alerts Newscenter_img “We welcome opening of criminal investigation in Lithuania in response to our complaint against Lukashenko” RSF says to go further RSF_en News May 27, 2021 Find out more BelarusEurope – Central Asia Help by sharing this information Organisation June 2, 2021 Find out morelast_img read more

College announces 2018 Commencement Speaker

first_imgCarolyn Woo, the former chief executive officer of Catholic Relief Services, will address the Saint Mary’s class of 2018 at its Commencement ceremony on May 19, according to a College press release. Woo will be awarded the College’s highest honor, an Honorary Doctor of Humanities, at the ceremony, according to the release. Woo immigrated to the United States for her studies after being born and raised in Hong Kong. She returned to her alma mater, Purdue University, as an associate professor in 1981 and as a full-time professor in 1991. According to the release, she served in several leadership roles at Purdue, as both the director of professional master’s programs in the Krannert School of Management and associate executive vice president for academic affairs. In 1997, Woo took on the role of Martin J. Gillen Dean of the University of Notre Dame’s Mendoza College of Business, which she held until 2011. In 2012, she began her time as the chief executive officer of Catholic Relief Services, where she served until 2016, according to the release. “Carolyn Woo embodies the spirit we strive to instill in our students: She is a woman of action,” College President Jan Cervelli said in the release. “Her career is a testament to the power of leadership that serves the greater good.”The College will also award an additional honorary degree to Sister Margaret “Peggy” O’Neill, according to the release.O’Neill has spent her life advocating for peace, according to the release. In her time working in the Diocese of San Salvador, she has promoted peace through her work with Salvadoran refugees during the civil war and creating an educational and cultural center in El Salvador that emphasized the importance of art and spiritual reflection. According to the release, she currently serves as a faculty member of Santa Clara University’s Casa de la Solidaridad in El Salvador. O’Neill had also spent over 25 years working as a theology professor in the past. O’Neill has received several honors for her work, including the 2008 Peacemaker Award of the Congregation of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Peace and the 2008 Ciudadana Ilustre Award, according to the press release. “Sister Peggy O’Neill enriches the lives of those around her with her buoyant spirit and unflagging commitment to service,” Cervelli said in the release. “Her accompaniment of people in need serves as a shining light through darkness.”Tags: Carolyn Woo, catholic relief services, Commencement 2018, Honorary degrees, Margaret O’Neill, Saint Mary’s Commencementlast_img read more