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Putting Journalism At The Heart Of Ethiopia’s Reform Programme

Journalists and Public officials in Gambela, Ethiopia Gambela JournalismDramatic reforms are underway in Ethiopia since the new Prime Minister Dr Abiy Ahmed came into office six months ago – he’s ended the long-running war with neighbouring Eritrea, released political prisoners and set about liberalising the economy.

Media reform is also at heart of the Prime Minister’s radical change programme and I’ve been travelling around Ethiopia for the past three weeks providing journalism training to more than two hundred journalists and government officials.

In a society where journalists have been frequently arrested, jailed and, occasionally, tortured it has been an uplifting and inspiring experience to help these young writers grow in confidence to tell Ethiopia’s story.

I’ve travelled to Bahir Dar near the source of the Blue Nile, Adama, Gambella near the South Sudan border, and Jijiga and Dire Dawa in the Somali region.

 In each location I discovered the same story – journalists hungry to learn, determined to put the years of repression behind them, and keen to write this new narrative for their country.

Here is Tibebu Bekele of the Business newspaper Fortune demonstrating the “Triangle of Trust” to remind us that audiences are the at the heart of everything journalists and public officials do.

Photo: Journalists and Public officials in Gambela, Ethiopia Gambela Journalism

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