August 16, 2021
ISLAMABAD—Pakistan Federal Union of Journalists (PFUJ) has outrightly rejected the misleading statements of Information and Broadcasting Minister Fawad Chaudhry in support of the proposed bill for creating Pakistan Media Development Authority (PMDA).
“By issuing such misleading statements to justify the creation of media authority, the information minister is not only damaging his own credibility but also that of the government,” the PFUJ said in a statement.
The statement, jointly issued by PFUJ President Shahzada Zulfiqar and Secretary-General Nasir Zaidi, said the proposed authority is being formed to deny press freedom and control the media outlets.
“No sane person or institution can endorse such an authority, and the PFUJ will resist this law with its fullest force.”
The PFUJ said that all the press clubs throughout the country and journalists’ unions have already rejected the proposed authority. It pointed out that other media stakeholders like APNS, CPNE, PBA, and AEMEND have also strongly rejected the authority.
“History is witness that PFUJ has always resisted such black laws designed to deprive people of their civil liberties, freedom of press and free speech,” the PFUJ said, adding “we will resist PMDA bill by all means at our disposal.”
The PFUJ leadership urged the PTI government, led by Prime Minister Imran Khan, to immediately call a meeting of all the stakeholders of media industry and real leadership of journalist community for the development of a consensus law or amendments to all the existing laws for the regulation of entire media-related industries.
“We are not opposed to improvement in the existing laws but will not allow anyone to tamper civil liberties or put restrictions on the freedom of the press under any garb,” the PFUJ added.
Photo: Twitter (@FawadChaudhry)
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