Basseterre, St. Kitts, June 03, 2021 (SKNIS): Thirty-six (36) media personnel from television, radio, newspapers, national news agencies, and multimedia channels joined a virtual meeting on May 31, 2021, to discuss matters relevant to the media’s role in today’s society. The meeting was organized by the presidents and directors of public media of the Latin American and Caribbean countries and members of ALBA –TCP.
The meeting also paved the way for the creation of a permanent joint mechanism to defend the political sovereignty of the ALBA countries as a bloc, take a leap towards Communication 3.0, and address the challenges of tele-education in pandemic times.
St. Kitts and Nevis’ delegation was headed by Lesroy Williams, Director-General of St. Kitts and Nevis Information Service (SKNIS). Other members of the delegation included Ambassador Vance Amory; Vere Galloway, General Manager of ZIZ, and Andre Hue, Manager/Journalist at SKN Newsline. Also present, was Marco Antonio Guzmán Adrian, Chargé d’ Affaires Ad Hoc of the Embassy of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela
Director-General Williams noted that the meeting was timely, and it is important to “communicate together in terms of what is happening with the Alliance.” He added that the media has a civic responsibility to keep the public reliably informed.
“The media plays, of course, a very important role in the provision of public information and we believe that public information is a public good. It is important that we are kept informed in terms of what is happening with our partner ALBA-TCP, the alliance which, of course, is about social welfare, bartering, and mutual economic aid,” said Director-General Williams.
He noted that an informed society is important as it can make informed decisions that lead to greater accountability.
“Now, of course, an informed society we believe is a society that can make the best-informed decisions. Informed people can participate in the development of themselves, and their country, and an informed society leads to the promotion of the common good,” he said. “Public information is important to transparency, accountability, and, of course, good governance. We here in St. Kitts and Nevis enjoy a democracy in which we have the freedom of the press and that is extremely important to any democratic society.”
The participants decided to deploy a joint campaign in support of the Resolution to be adopted on June 23rd by the United Nations General Assembly, in order to condemn the criminal unilateral coercive measures imposed by the United States against Cuba, which were intentionally intensified during the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic with the purpose to block access to medicines, supplies, and equipment necessary to face this global health emergency.
During the meeting, participants also rejected the persistent brutal repression by the security forces of Iván Duque’s government, disregarding the calls for national dialogue by the Colombian people and embarking instead on a spiral of extrajudicial executions, arbitrary detentions, forced disappearances, rapes, and state and parastatal violence against protesters.