Ugandan Press Urged to Champion Climate Change Awareness

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Ugandan Press Urged to Champion Climate Change Awareness
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Uganda's World Press Freedom Day celebration echoed a global call for journalists to tackle environmental challenges. The theme, "A Press for the Planet," underscored the media's vital role in raising awareness about climate change.

Concerns dominated the event, with speakers highlighting the devastating effects of climate change across Africa, including landslides and floods in Kenya, Eastern, and Western Uganda. The Uganda Human Rights Commission emphasized the power of the press. Commissioner Crispin Kaheru urged journalists to leverage their freedom to shape narratives and advocate for solutions that benefit the majority.

Mariam Wangadya, the Commission's Chairperson, resonated with this sentiment. She stressed how the right tools, accurate information, and collaboration can empower journalists to address environmental issues.

"This World Press Freedom Day commemoration is therefore timely to remind us all, especially those who wield the power of the pen that, with the right tools, choice of words, facts and support of one another, we have everything it takes to address environmental challenges that we are currently dealing with," said Mariam Wangadya, Chairperson Uganda Human Rights Commission.

The importance of responsible reporting was also addressed. Paul Ekochu, Head of the Uganda Media Council, cautioned against sensationalism. He jokingly cited a CNN report claiming people could smell landslide victims in Kenya, questioning the validity of such claims.

"For example, Larry Madowo, the CNN correspondent in Kenya said that the smell of the deceased land slide victims was heard. Some one in the US must have wondered how gifted are the Africans that we hear the smell," commented Ekochu.

The focus on climate change during World Press Freedom Day underscores the urgency of the issue. Ugandan journalists are called upon to be responsible stewards of information, wielding their freedom to educate the public and foster solutions for a sustainable future.

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