Kathmandu, Sept 26 : Two-day training on parliamentary affairs reporting organised by Working Women Journalists (WWJ) for women journalists concluded here on Thursday.
A total of 25 working women journalists from all seven states across the country had participated in it supported by the Parliamentary Support Project (PSP), United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).
It covered several issues required for parliamentary journalism such as the history of parliamentary affairs in Nepal and parliamentary journalism, practices of reporting, basic criteria; and knowledge about the constitution, rules and regulations, journalist code of conducts, the House proceedings, process of enacting bill, specific terminologies related to the House such as objection, rostrum, ruling, unparliamentary language and gesture; and so on that any journalist must have for parliamentary reporting.
The participants were also introduced about the duties, responsibilities and significance of legislature, Federal Parliament session (joint and separate), State Assembly, possible news angle from gender perspectives, major news content, sources of news, the business of thematic committees, norms and values required for parliamentary reporting, zero hour, special hour, the role of Speaker and main opposition, sitting positions of the House members and presence of the Press during the House session.
Besides, a session on ‘open parliament: global practice and media roles’ was part of training and it was facilitated by UNDP’s PSP outreach team leader Dila Datt Pant.
Senior journalists Nirmala Acharya and Yuba Raj Ghimire, parliamentary journalists Jagat Nepal, Narendra Saud and Narayan Kafle facilitated the session. Participants actively engaged in ‘a mock parliament’ which also the part of training.
The programme was concluded on the witness of Deputy Speaker, House of Representatives, Dr Shiva Maya Tumbahamphe. On the occasion, the Deputy Speaker expressed her concern over a limited number of women journalists in parliamentary reporting.
Sharing her experience that she occasionally saw women faces in the parliament, she said it always grabbed her attention.
Seeking an increased involvement of women journalists in every beat including the parliamentary one, she urged those senior male journalists with long experiences in the related sector to encourage women and aspiring women journalists to seek a career in parliamentary journalism and to be responsive, supportive and cooperative towards them. She also called on women journalists to cultivate a learning attitude, and seek a career in parliamentary reporting as well.
She went on to say that there were grudges that voices of women leaders and lawmakers were less heard and given less media coverage than of male counterparts, underlining the need of addressing this concern and bridging the gap. “Journalists and parliamentarians have mutual relations” she added.
As she said the increased presence of women journalists would help women’s movement gain more achievements.
According to WWJ President Amika Rajthala, the WWJ formed in 2006 is all committed to advocating for the causes of working women journalists.
Activities of the WWJ as being an organisation of working women journalists are aimed to increase the presence of women’s journalists in terms of quality and quantity by encouraging women to join the field of journalism and providing them several opportunities for skills enhancement and training was part of it. Inaugurating training on Wednesday, Minister for Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs Bhanubhakta Dhakal spoke the need of increasing meaningful participation of women in every field including journalism for the overall development of society.