Media Must Not Be Suppressed: Manning

Commissioner of Police David Manning said the media is critical for a healthy functioning democracy and must not be suppressed in any way.

Mr Manning made this remark as media professionals in PNG met yesterday to commemorate World Media Freedom Day with a breakfast at the Gateway Hotel in Port Moresby.

May 3 has been proclaimed by the United Nations as Media Freedom Day as a reminder to world governments and the people of the need to respect their commitment to press freedom. It is also a day of reflection among media professionals about issues of press freedom and professional ethics and to remember journalists who lost their lives.



Mr Manning said the media as an independent body should be allowed to carry out its important role in informing the people without fear or favour.

“For any democracy to fully function there must be the presence of a fully functioning and free media that is dedicated to inform and educate the masses and to hold people and governments to account for their actions,” Mr Manning said.

However, Mr Manning said media freedom also comes with a big responsibility.

“When you put pen to paper you can destroy lives, reputations, careers, marriages, companies, governments and countries. So that is why you must exercise that freedom responsibly. Be honest. Be accurate. Be fair, and be responsible,” Mr Manning said.

The theme for this year’s World Media Freedom Day is “Journalism under Surveillance”.

Mr Manning said technology has certainly made a big impact, whether negative or positive, on journalism and the freedom of expression. The theme aims to highlight some of the challenges media is faced with in trying to fully exercise its roles in different parts of the world and media sectors in this technological age.

With the emerging technology in the country, there is a rapid increase in number of citizens using the internet and online applications such as Facebook of which the mainstream media tries to cater for by creating pages and having online news to keep the citizens informed on what is happening in the country as well as what is happening around the world.

Mr Manning said the emergence of the internet has also seen an increase in cybercrime which the Constabulary is dealing with.

Press Release