DefyHateNow Drills Journalists on Conflict Sensitive Reporting

Cross view of participants

Some journalists from the North West region of Cameroon have been trained on conflict sensitive reporting during a three day training that held at in Bafoussam.

The over 20 journalists were taught on how to identify a conflict situation and properly report it. In the course of the training, it was realised that, some of the reasons why stories regarding conflicts are not properly reported is due to the fact that journalists do not totally understand the conflict they are reporting and the different stakeholders and actors involved.

The main facilitator, Eugene N. Nforngwa of the Africa Knowledge and Policy Centre, AKPC, made the journalists to understand that the most cruel forms of violence are actually suffered in silence and that every story has many sides not only two.

"Usually in a conflict, the least trustworthy source is often and official source and things said by them should be taken with plenty of salt, not a pinch"

"Disinformation is a legitimate military tactic", Eugene N. Nforngwa told the journalists.

Eugene Nforngwa, main facilitator 

He encouraged the journalists to always identify the needs of people in a conflict situation and properly report them. To him, this can be a step towards ending the conflict.

The journalists were also  drilled on how to map local conflicts, reporting on Peacebuilding, Hate Speech, Safety, and how to manage trauma amongst others.

At the end of the three days workshop, the participants acknowledged that, they are going back home with many lessons learnt.

"I am going back with a new understanding of journalism related concepts and palance use in our daily reporting such as objectivity and fair balancing, what truth and accuracy is in news reporting as well some conflict sensitive techniques/tools which I as a journalist can use(frame) in accompanying, mitigating the negative impact of a conflict like the crisis in my region" Gnoukapasir Martial of Afrique Nouvelle Radio said. To Gnoukapasir Martial, he will apply the mastered tools and techniques gathered from this workshop and by so doing his report will make a difference, standout and provide narratives that will enable persons make informed choices.

"It was interesting to learn that there are never only two sides to a story but many and that the least trustworthy sources are the official ones and as such what they say should be taken with much salt not just a pinch", Fonguh Primus Ayeh of Rainbow Radio in Mbengwi told The Observer.

The training that held on 8-10 October 2020 was held on the theme "Catalyzing Media for Peace and Justice in Cameroon" was organized by #DefyHateNow in collaboration with Africa Knowledge and Policy Centre, AKPC.

By Nji Nelson Chefor

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