With Support from UNESCO and the Government of Sweden, series of media interaction sessions organized and conducted jointly by Rwanda Media commission and Rwanda National Police that engaged the public order and law enforcers (Police & DASSO Officers), members of the media fraternity and local government officials as well, were concluded with call and commitment to partnership between the media, public order and law enforcers and local government.
Since April to 11th July 2017, six (6) media interactions sessions were conducted between the media and police under the theme: “Strengthening Partnership for Quality Service Delivery.”
During the period, the interactions took place in form of outreach seminars on the following dates: Eastern Province: on 8th June 2017, Western Province: on 30th June 2017, Northern Province: on 6th July 2017 and Southern Province on 7th July 2017 with a climax meeting that took place at Rwanda National Police Headquarters on 11th July 2017.
Speaking to the participants at the closing media interaction session held at Rwanda National Police Headquarters, the Guest of Honor, The Minister of Justice and Attorney General, Hon. Busingye Johnston commended the growing trends of media professionalism in Rwanda and reiterated the need for responsible and professional coverage of Presidential election processes. “…Today we have the most professional media that is diverse, well informed, and serving the interest of the people.” He noted.
The Hon. Minister further commended RMC and RNP for organizing the media interaction sessions, and called for more collaborative efforts between the Police and media as well as the public to particularly ensure that, the forthcoming presidential campaigns and elections are conducted in a safe and secure environment.
“The election preparations are meant to ensure that rights of everyone are fully respected, and security maintained through collaborative efforts among all actors including the general public,” Minister Busingye said.
The meeting was also attended by the Inspector General of Police (IGP), Emmanuel K. Gasana, Deputy IGP in charge of Operations, Dan Munyuza, the Executive Secretary of the National Electoral Commission (NEC), Charles Munyaneza, the Executive Secretary of Rwanda Media Commission (RMC),Senior Government Officials, Media practitioners, representatives of different media development partners and senior Police officials among others.
During the meeting, Rwanda National Police and the Electoral Commission guaranteed the safety of journalists and access to information during elections.
The Executive Secretary of Rwanda Media Commission presented to the participants the guidelines for media coverage of elections which mainly reminded the journalists there duty to the nation, to the public (electorate) and to the candidates.
Over 600 booklets of the code of ethics were distributed in these media interaction sessions to help the participants and the general public understands better the rights and obligation of journalists and their role in society.
Almost all sessions conducted at provincial levels provided a platform of dialogue and in-depth discussions between journalists, governors, high ranking security officers and local government leaders mainly district mayors. Commitments to put in place mechanisms meant to enable the effective access to information by journalists including their protection on duty were made in all provinces where these dialogues were conducted.
Also a number of resolutions were recommended and adopted during the meetings and most of them were focusing on guaranteeing the effective service delivery to the public. The major outcome of these media interaction session is the advancement of an enabling environment for media to serve its role in promoting accountable governance. It was recommended also that such interactions should be conducted on regular basis to enhance the working relations with the media as a key partner in national development.
In pictures, the 11th Media Police interaction session:
Rwanda Media Commission (RMC), the Rwanda media self-regulatory Body mandated to regulate the daily functioning of the media and the conduct of journalists released the Rwanda Journalists’ guidelines for election coverage meant to be used by the media practitioners and the media houses when covering elections related events. The guidelines are in three languages: Kinyarwanda, French and English.
Download the Rwanda Journalists’ guidelines for election coverage here: Guideline
RMC (Rwanda Media Commission) is the Media Self-Regulatory Body in Rwanda instructed by Law N0. 02/2013 of 08/02/2013 regulating Media most especially in its Article 2 (20°) and established by all Rwandan journalists in their General Assembly of 27/8/2013. The Self-Regulatory Body is mandated to protect journalists, regulate their conduct and the daily functioning of media and advocate for media freedom in Rwanda.
As part of its duty to ensure compliance with ethical journalistic practices as mandated by Law No.02/2013 of 08/02/2013 regulating the media and as articulated in the journalistic Code of Ethics, the Rwanda Media Commission monitors media content on a regular basis. Based on this monitoring and in case any issues are identified, RMC engages the concerned editors to discuss any emerging concerns.
For fulfilling its mandate, the Rwanda Media Commission (RMC) in partnership with Institut Panos Grands Lacs (IPGL) for the implementation of the project “Elections, the media, civil society and democracy in Rwanda” (ELMS) financed by European Union wishes to recruit four (4) monitoring agents in charge of monitoring and assessing 8 Rwanda radios and 4 TV content using the newly established IT system to monitor the Rwandan media content for 3 months (June, July and August) in 2017.
- Conduct regular monitoring through the media monitoring system, using an agreed framework, to ensure professional and ethical compliance with Rwanda Journalists’ guidelines for election coverage and the Journalistic Code of Ethics as ratified by the General Assembly of journalists;
- Pinpoint specific aspects of media content as professional and/or ethical gaps that should form a basis for conversations between the RMC and editors/proprietors;
- Categorizing the media content within the electronic Media monitoring system;
- Propose the way forward in accordance with the media laws and code of ethics regarding the monitored content;
- Report to the Executive Secretary about any aspects of media content and/or trends that raise concerns regarding the Code of Ethics;
- Constantly review the monitoring framework and advise on appropriate adjustments to ensure an efficient and effective monitoring system;
- Compile regular reports from monitoring data, citing trends and themes in media ethics and professionalism.
- Bachelor’s degree in Journalism/communication or any other related field
- Knowledge of media and media related issues
- Knowledge of current media status in Rwanda
- Experience for one year at least in media monitoring
- Experience in using electronic media monitoring systems
- Fluency in Kinyarwanda and English (French being an added advantage)
- Excellent writing skills
- Ability to use basic statistical IT tools such as SPSS and Excel
- Disciplined person with high integrity
- Weekly categorization of talk shows from 8 radios and 4 TV captured within the monitoring equipment
- Daily report on classified content
- Daily report on monitored content showing weaknesses, areas to improve and strength with the Rwandan electronic media
- Final report clearly highlighting the areas where RMC should take a step ahead in its monitoring work
- Avail content to monitor once any case from the public regarding the Rwandan media content emerges
- Monitoring Agents will produce 7 monitoring reports on presidential election coverage, that is 2 reports per month and one compiled report
Means of verification
- Daily and weekly reports will be submitted on a weekly basis to the RMC Executive Secretary
- Categorized content will be stored in the main server for future use by RMC monitoring officers
How to Apply
Interested candidates should send an application letter, addressed to the Chairperson of the Rwanda Media Commission plus updated Curriculum Vitae in English, copies of academic credentials, Copy of National ID and 3 referees to: firstname.lastname@example.org or hand delivered at RMC premises before 26th May, 2017, 3:00 p.m.
*Note that only shortlisted candidates will be contacted
Done at Kigali,
Rwanda Media Commission
The Rwanda media Self-regulatory body (Rwanda Media commission) jointly with Rwanda National Police have organized regular interaction session between the public order and law enforcers (Police & DASSO Officers) and members of the media fraternity under the theme: “Strengthening Partnership for Quality Service Delivery.” During the first interaction held on 3rd April 2017, a twelve-point resolutions were adopted at the end of the one day Rwanda National Police, District Administration Security Support Organs (DASSO) and the Rwanda media fraternity interaction session, aimed at enhancing a better working relationship between the security forces and the media in Rwanda.
The day-long session was graced by representatives from the Swedish embassy, UNESCO, Legal Aid Forum, Rwanda Governance Board, Rwanda Utility Regulatory Authority, National Commission for the Fight against Genocide, and the National Public Prosecution Authority among others.
The opening session was officiated by the Honorable Minister of Justice and Attorney General Hon. Busingye Johnston .He highlighted that Professional journalism is about serving the interest of the people when it comes to crime prevention and compliance with the law, your commitment to public safety is highly valued.
The chairperson of Rwanda Media Commission (RMC), Cleophas Barore, said that in a period of four years, RMC has mediated and adjudicated over 200 filed complaints and none of them was handled by either the Police or judicial courts of law.This achievement was considered a success story by the guest honor, Hon. Busingye who stated that the Rwanda courts have been laid off the burden of media related cases but much more guaranteed the constitutional rights of freedom of expression by journalists.
UNESCO Regional Office for Eastern Africa was represented by Ms Lydia Gachungi, the regional expert for safety of journalists and media development who urged the media national stakeholders to establish a national mechanism for safety, taking into account that the safety of journalists concerns cannot be addressed by any single institution or organization. “Safety of Journalists can be addressed comprehensively by tackling the three Ps which are prevention, protection and prosecution. There is need to elaborate who the stakeholdersof such a mechanism should be, whom such mechanism should cover not forgetting citizen journalists and bloggers and the design considering the country historical and current context,” Ms. Gachungi reiterated.
The Police spokesperson, ACP Theos Badege indicated that the relationship between media and police is improving compared to previous years where incidents of friction between police and media was adversarial. He however called on the journalist to always carry their identification documents with them for the police to ensure their security while on duty.
Participants to this session that included high ranking police officers,District administration security services officers ,journalists ,academicians and senior government representatives present deliberated on key issues to advance ethical reporting of legal and justice matters, safety of journalists, rights and obligations and responsible coverage of the commemoration of the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi.
In his closing remarks, the Inspector General of Police, IGP Emmanuel Gasana advised that the adopted 12 resolutions should rather be action points to ensure that impact is attained.
The resolutions centered on ensuring ethical reporting of legal and justice matters, safety of journalists, responsible coverage of the commemoration of the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi and empowering Rwanda Media Commission to effectively monitor the media performance.
With Support from UNESCO and the Government of Sweden, the Rwanda National Police and the media fraternity in Rwanda are holding six Police – Media interaction sessions at the national and regional level in the month of April and May 2017. This follows a the resolutions of the training of Police and journalists on safety of journalists which took place in April 2016 and resolutions of the meeting of 20th June 2016 where participants recommended regular interaction sessions between Rwanda National Police (RNP) and media fraternity.
Rwanda’s security is intact, the Minister for Justice, Johnston Busingye, said yesterday, as he called for continued partnership at all levels to sustain what has been achieved.
The Minister made the remarks while officiating at the opening of a one-day Police-Media interaction session held at Police headquarters under the theme; “Strengthening Partnership for Quality Service Delivery.” The session is held on a quarterly basis.
“Professional journalism is about serving the interest of the people, precisely when it comes to crime prevention and compliance with the law… your commitment to public safety is highly valued,” the Minister said.
He reminded journalists that their work serves as an enabler for the nation’s development.
“The government is proud of the important role the media is playing by being good advocates for citizen interests.”
“Crimes affect all of us, including criminals themselves. We should all desist from crime to avoid its consequences. All Rwandans should work towards a country that’s free from illicit drugs, corruption, cyber-enabled crimes, theft, Gender Based Violence and any other crime,” he said.
He particularly emphasized the role of the media in championing the ongoing efforts against trafficking, distribution and use of narcotics.
“Drug-related crimes should be dealt with because of their adverse effects on humanity.”
He further highlighted that although Rwanda remains safe, emerging cross-border security threats such as terrorism and technology-facilitated crimes remain a global concern that requires collective approach.
The chairperson of Rwanda Media Commission (RMC), Cleophas Barore, said that, “of the 200 cases we have handled in the last four years, none of those has been referred to the Police….besides that, these interactions help bridge the gap between the Police and the media.”
While closing the session, the Inspector General of Police (IGP) Emmanuel K Gasana said that; “the security architecture was set by all agencies and it incorporates all players including the media, the general public and other public and private entities which has facilitated easy access to information.”
He also called for partnership especially in the forthcoming 23rd commemoration of the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi.
The day-long session was attended by representative from the Swedish embassy, UNESCO Legal Aid Forum, Rwanda Governance Board, Rwanda Utility Regulatory Authority, National Commission for the Fight against Genocide, and the National Public Prosecution Authority.
Senior Police officers, journalists and experts present deliberated on working relations between the media and police, ethical reporting of legal and justice matters, safety of journalists, rights and obligations and responsible coverage of the commemoration of the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi.
Rwanda Media Commission (RMC), a media self-regulatory body, on Wednesday suspended Assouman Niyonambaza, the publisher of Rugari newspaper, for three months and ordered him to temporarily hand over his press card.
An RMC disciplinary committee concluded that Niyonambaza, the publisher and senior writer of Rugari, defamed the University of Technology and Arts of Byumba (UTAB) in successive articles published early last year.
The committee was hearing an appeal lodged by Niyonambaza who had challenged a decision taken by the same body last year.
Based on Rugari’s stories in two issues published in March and April last year, RMC had earlier found the publisher guilty of spreading malicious rumors, defamation and invasion of privacy among other charges.
He was also found guilty of publishing not allowing the other side to comment, publishing sensationalised headlines and failure to draw a line between a news story and an opinion piece.
UTAB had filed the case to RMC in June the varsity presenting two stories published in Rugari newspaper one alleging that UTAB management had mismanaged a tender worth Rwf856m, while the other article called for urgent intervention at the Gicumbi-based institution.
In June last year, RMC found that Rugari newspaper breached professional ethics and ordered Niyonambaza to publish errata setting the record straight on both articles.
Other sanctions at the time included ordering the newspaper to write a formal apology UTAB management which prompted Niyonambaza to appeal against the decision.
To hear the appeal, RMC in January this year assigned a disciplinary committee to look into the appeal case and the committee, which was headed by Donatien Mucyo, a lawyer, consulted both parties.
The team therefore resolved to temporarily withdraw Niyonambaza’s press card for a period of three months on top of writing an apology to the university management.
Media issues in Rwanda are no longer to do with “access to information” but rather “how to make money and build capacity of journalists.”
This was the key message that media practitioners and investors echoed during a media breakfast organised last week at Kigali Serena Hotel.
Speakers noted that the main reason behind the sloppy growth of media sector in the country is lack of financial capacity by media players to invest and grow.
The head of Media Investors Forum Charles Kakooza, said that although great strides have been made in the media sector, more needs to be done to make it more professional and economically powerful.
Recounting how he started TV1, under harsh circumstances – only to break even a year-plus later – Kakooza said that, without economic sustainability in Rwanda’s media, the sector won’t be able to thrive and practitioners won’t grow professionally. “The media sector needs a financial boost. Setting up the media fund is one way we can kick poverty out of the media sector. It is important that development partners and government help in establishing this fund to spur the growth of the sector,” Kakooza said.
Kakooza also believes that media development can’t be achieved without cooperation from both public and private sector.
Several development partners and government officials, who spoke to The New Times at the media breakfast, shared similar sentiments; they believe that weak financial capacity has cost the media profession in the country, hence making its contribution to the national development relatively less.
The forum in Kigali that brought together development partners and media personnel was organised by Rwanda Governance Board.
“I think the quality of media in general can be improved,” said Mikael Bostrom, Counsellor and head of Development cooperation at the Embassy of Sweden.
Bostrom added that media development in general needs sustainable financing and that media sector must to find a way to self-financing to grow independently.
According to the Rwanda Media Barometer 2016, media sector grew by only 8.9 per cent in the last three years.
Prof. Anastase Shyaka, the Chief Executive Officer of RGB said that having a media fund will solve numerous issues in the sector and will certainly enable a vibrant media sector that is free, professional, responsible, and profitable.
Cleophas Barore, the Acting Chairperson of Rwanda Media Commission (RMC)—a media self-regulatory body—said that the fund would enable journalists and media investors to access finances for investment and other endeavours at little interest .
Lamin M. Manneh, the UN Resident Coordinator, however, acknowledged that the introduction of media reforms and the constitution of the media laws have been vital in transforming the sector.
The Rwanda Media Commission (RMC) and UNESCO have produced five videos on media regulation for wide dissemination in the Republic of Rwanda. The project was generously supported by the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA) and the Government of Sweden. The videos were produced to build awareness amongst journalists, media practitioners, government officials, and the general public concerning current media laws, standards, and the basic rights of journalists and those involved in the profession. The videos provide general information on a number of principles required for a healthy democratic society where journalism is openly practiced, and freedom of expression is encouraged and not compromised by threats or other forms of intimidation and violence. The videos are also useful as they instruct individuals on current media law and direct individuals to relevant legal articles for the specific text.
The five videos cover the following topics:
- Protection of Sources discusses the fundamental principle that sources of information need to be protected and free from harm, threats and intimidation; anonymity is an important principle to help ensure that individuals do not fail to provide information for threat of retaliation and is key for exposing corruption in government;
- Complaint Handling discusses the role of RMC in handing complaints by any individual who may feel aggrieved by content in the media; it covers information on how an individual can lodge a complaint and the procedures RMC follows including its reliance on the code of ethics;
- Media Plurality provides information on the importance of there being many voices and opinions in the media for ensuring high quality and responsible content and in maintaining a healthy democracy; it discusses individuals rights to start a media organisation and how to do so;
- Safety of Journalists sheds light on the problem of journalists’ safety in conducting their trade; it explains the role of RMC in protecting their rights and that it takes action whenever journalists are attacked, imprisoned, kidnapped or harassed; and
- Journalist Accreditation provides information on the role of media to facilitate a well-functioning democracy and in particular that journalistic accreditation by RMC is an important lever for accessing all sources of public information allowing media practitioners to carry out their investigations fully and without hindrance.
The videos will be disseminated widely on the RMC website, through social networks, and through various other platforms. They will be important for strengthening a culture of freedom of expression and openness in journalism and media in general to reinforce a cohesive and flourishing society.
The Rwanda Media Commission (RMC) is a Rwandan media self-regulatory body that has been set up as a result of The Media Policy that was adopted on 30th June 2012 and the subsequent legal and institutional reforms that followed in March 2013 within the Media sector.
Due to an increase in power consumption at the secretariat, Rwanda Media Commission is hereby inviting any interested and certified company to submit their quotations to supply RMC with electric power for a period of one year. These quotations should be submitted to RMC offices near Sports View Hotel before 24th March 2016.