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Head of Bahrain Journalists Association: Print Media Won’t Disappear

Head of Bahrain Journalists Association: Print Media Won’t Disappear

Monday, 18 February, 2019 - 09:45
Manama- Obeid Al-Suhaimi
The Chairman of Bahrain Journalists Association, Ahdeya Ahmed, believes that print media will not be disappearing anytime soon, but says changes need to be administered. In today’s digital age, the once-thriving industry struggles to secure an income.

Ahmed noted that innovation needs to come through in replacing losses caused by the advertisement industry’s stifling exodus. Most modern-day ad agencies prefer employing digital platforms. As for journalism in Bahrain, Ahmed cited a growing desire for updated regulations to help the industry stay relative to developments experienced by the country.

Ahmed, the first-ever female chair to preside over the Gulf state’s journalists association and Editor in Chief of Bahrain’s Daily Tribune, told Asharq Al-Awsat that Bahraini women gaining power in the country’s press echelons will enable her to sense the needs of colleagues and address pressing matters.

“Bahraini women journalists were able to enrich various media fields and serve as a catalyst for significant development in media,” Ahmed said on the role played by women in Bahrain media.

“Women attaining leadership positions in media bodies is iconic in its own right, especially that international reports on sustainable development involving women is given great importance,” she added.

“For my premiership over the Association, I look forward to reducing obstacles faced by women journalists in the field, especially in terms of helping them balance between their home and media careers.”

On the support Ahmed received while running for her post, she said: “Here, too, I would like to pay tribute to the support of colleagues in Saudi dailies that lasted throughout my campaign and later celebrated the results.”

She added that the warm support she received from fellow Saudi journalists has amplified her drive to take coming challenges head-on.

According to Ahmed, there are several concerns haunting media professionals. But a newly-issued press law, announced by Bahraini King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa and included in the National Action Charter, will guarantee greater protection for journalists and media professionals.

Ahmed also positively reviewed plans for the establishment of a fund to support journalists.

“When the media establishment and news organizers realize the role and responsibility of the media in the society, its role as a fourth estate is automatically activated for raising vital issues at a high level of professionalism,” Ahmed said on the press being the fourth estate.

“I repeat again that continuous training of young cadres will also activate this role,” she added.

When asked about the difficult experience Bahrain has undergone over the past period, Ahmed notes that the role of press is to “support not destroy nations.”

“There have been difficult times indeed, but now we have gone beyond all that we have been subjected to, and Bahrain has returned as before, and will always be better,” she said.

“As in every society, there are also reckless writers that have exploited freedom of expression and abused the homeland…The role of newspapers must be to protect and not destroy nations, no matter how we disagree with each other,” she said, while adding that the first and foremost objective upheld by the association was the protection of the security and stability of the Kingdom of Bahrain and fellow Gulf states.

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