BZU Media Development Center Launches Media National Strategy Project

On Wednesday 4 July 2012, the BZU Media
Development Center (MDC) launched the Palestinian Media National Strategy
during a ceremony with the participation of their Strategy partners.


In his speech, BZU President, Dr Khalil Hindi, noted
his appreciation for the cooperation between the Council of Ministers, the
Government Media Center and the Journalists Syndicate as well as that of universities
and local partner organizations in this national project.

Discussing that which is needed for this
partnership to create a sustainable framework that can advance the Palestinian
media, Dr. Hindi argued that such a framework would diminish financial waste
and help conserve valuable resources.


Dr. Hindi further pointed out that this endeavor works
towards an ultimate goal of building and maintaining sustainable media
capacities, which will be accomplished by enhancing journalist and citizen
awareness of their rights and duties in a society ideally characterized by freedom
and equality. It will further be realized through the building of networks with
local, regional and international partners.



Moreover, a key objective of the Strategy is to
develop media policies through discussions with and advocacy to governmental
and civil society organizations.


MDC Director, Nibal Thawabteh, stated that the
idea for the national Strategy arose from an urgent need to direct and regulate
national efforts at media development and put in place eligibility requirements.


Director of the Government Media Center, Dr.
Ghassan el-Khatib, stressed that the project should respond to the needs of
various parties, including the public, NGOs and state bodies. El-Khatib emphasized
that the government will facilitate a national team to implement the Strategy
in order to improve media performance, noting that graduating exceptional
journalists is a core project outcome. ''We hope that this team will handle
'legislation' issues, as we are keen to review all legislation pertaining to
media. We also require a High Council for media, together with continued activity
and expansion of the Journalists’ Union. The main gap in the Palestinian media is
its inability to serve as the primary source of information for the Palestinian
people, who largely rely on foreign media. We must strive to develop an
effective public opinion that protects freedom of the press and freedom of
expression as well as provides and develops a more tolerant culture that can
deal with multiple opinions and official criticism,'' Dr. el-Khatib said.


Dr. Abdul Nasser Najjar, President of the Journalists
Syndicate, welcomed the Strategy, emphasizing that the Syndicate will adopt it
as the first practical step towards moving beyond the current media impasse.
"The most important step to realize this plan is drafting the Strategy so
it can develop and improve local media" Najjar added.


BZU Media Professor, Mr. Abdul Rahim Abdullah,
stressed that the Strategy will enable discussion around, and academic research
on, a national framework for Palestinian media, that facilitates the
implementation of the Strategy. It will further create a three-year plan that
is binding to all parties (the government, local and international
stakeholders) in terms of finances, supervision and implementation.


Editor-in-chief at WAFA, the Palestine News
Agency, Mr. Ali Hussein suggested that a specialized media school be
established, which responds to the need for certain
criteria to govern the industry.


On behalf of the Palestine
Broadcast Corporation (PBC), Mr. Emad el-Asfar, head of radio programs
department, stated that the greatest beneficiary from this effort will be the
radio, as it is Palestine's largest media branch. He articulated the PBC’s
readiness to cooperate in order to ensure the success of this strategy