National Union of Somalia Journalists (NUSOJ) and the Finnish Foundation for Media Development VIKES today concluded a two day media workers labour rights and how to organize training funded by the European Union for 25 journalists in Kismayo, Jubaland State of Somalia.
The training was attended by public and private media operating in Kismayu representing 15 televisions, 5 radio stations and 8 websites. Trainees learnt benefits of trade unions, labour rights as a press freedom, how to organize at local level and at trade union level, problem solving in workplaces, benefits of collective action and working under a contract.
The training was officially opened on 27 August by Director General of Jubaland Ministry of Information, Telecommunication and Posts Abdishakur Arab. He thanked the European Union for the support and urged NUSOJ and VIKES to organize more trainings across Jubaland in order to increase capacities of more journalists.
“Labour rights are fundamental rights of workers. Jubaland Government welcomes the media workers labour rights training brought by the EU and implemented by NUSO and VIKES. We hope the 25 journalists will be more enlightened of their labour rights after their training and they will have gained the necessary negotiation skills to agitate for better rights. The Ministry of Information supports journalists rights and is ready to support the media staff in agitating for their rights,” Arab said during the opening ceremony.
NUSOJ Head of Training Farah Omar thanked Jubaland for extending a warm welcome to NUSOJ and said the union is determined to improve the capacity of Somalia journalists. “We are pleased to provide the media labour rights and how to organize training to Jubaland journalists. NUSOJ and VIKES have implemented similar trainings in Mogadishu and Garowe. The purpose of the training is to help the journalists to learn their labour rights to help improve their working conditions,” he added.
On the last day of the training today a panel discussion on raising contracts and workers rights was held in the afternoon in which 4 media Directors faced a barrage of questions from the journalists who sought to know whether media workers at their stations have working contracts. The Directors welcomed the discussion and promised to better the working conditions for their staff.
Speaking respectively on behalf of the trainees and media Directors, Abdiqadir Jama Mohamed of State owned Jubaland TV and Sahra Abdi Mohamed, RTV TV Kismayo Director said it was high time for Jubaland journalists to unite and forge a common interest and organize themselves by forming a unified media union that will represent media workers rights and interests.
The training was today officially closed by Hassan Abdullahi, Senior Advisor Jubaland Ministry of Information, Telecommunication and Posts. He urged the media to unite and organize themselves in order to have a unified local union that will effectively represent the media and defend their rights