Liberian Press Union Condemns Pro-Temp’s Assault On Journalist: Regrets Death Publisher

The Press Union of Liberia (PUL) has termed as unacceptable, the recent

Sen Cletus Wotorson
Sen Cletus Wotorson

aggression on journalist Solomon Ware of Truth FM by the Senate President Pro Tempore, Cletus Wotorson.

The Union says after conducting an investigation into the incident, it has been established that Senator Wotorson acted improperly.

PUL says information gathered from people at the Capitol and supported by the video footage, contradicts the Senator’s contention that it was the reporter who pushed him.

The video recording viewed by journalists and the Spokesman of the Pro Temp’s office, vividly showed Mr. Wotorson throwing his elbow at the reporter.

However, PUL says it is yet to understand what aggravated the Senator so easily, when the journalist simply asked a question which could have been ignored, instead of choosing to intimidate the reporter.

The Union described the incident as unfortunate and a defeat of its recent desire to build a relationship with the Legislature, as the fallout took place only a day after celebrating World Press Freedom Day with the Lawmakers and a week after an acquaintance meeting with Senator Wotorson.

The umbrella group for journalists however says while it remains open to working with all branches of government in moving the country forward, it will not take kindly any deliberate or arbitrary action against the media, and therefore backs the reporters call for Mr. Wotorson to offer an apology in order to lay the matter to rest.

While deploying the humiliation suffered by reporter Ware, the Union believes a blackout should be the last resort in such a matter, but hopes the action will send a message to those entrusted with state power not to use their positions to abuse others.

The Union calls on journalists to remain steadfast and professional in the discharge of their duties to society and never be distracted.

Meanwhile the PUL announces the death of journalist Boimah Clement, Publisher of the Times Newspaper.

Clement died on May 6 at the John F. Kennedy Hospital after a tragic motor accident. A Water and Sewer water truck ran off the road into Clement on the Somalia Drive.

His remains have been deposited at the Samuel Stryker Funeral parlors in Sinkor. The Union will open a book of condolence to the memory of the fallen journalist on Friday, May 15 at 10:00am at the Union’s headquarters on Clay Street.

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Author: D K Sengbeh

Danicius Kaihenneh Sengbeh (author of Sengbeh's Weblog) is a respected and renowned Liberian journalist, poet and writer with with journalism experience since 2001, of working both as a mainstream journalist and a communication/media consultant in Liberia. He is Secretary General of the Press Union of Liberia (elected Dec 2013). He was Assistant Secretary General of the Union Dec 2011 to Dec 2013. He is also Editor-In-Chief of The Informer Newspaper—one of Liberia’s credible dailies. Before joining the Informer, Danicius had served as reporter, chief reporter, sub-editor and News Editor at The Independent Newspaper between 2002 and 2006. Before then, he was reporter at the defunct Patriot Newspaper and Kiss FM 2001-2002. Danicius is a UN Media Fellow and Liberia’s first UN Medal Award-winning journalist for his contribution to journalism and for being the second Liberian journalist in 15 years to qualify for and successfully attended the United Nations’ Reham Al-Farra Memorial Journalist Fellowship Program in New York and Geneva, Switzerland in 2012. He earned a Bachelor’s of Arts Degree in Mass Communication and Sociology from the University of Liberia and a Diploma in Journalism from the International School of Journalism. He holds several awards and recognitions both in and outside of journalism, and carries dozens of certificates in journalism and communication from studies in Ghana, China, United States and Switzerland, among others. He volunteers as Chair of the Information and Communication Committee of his local Bardnersville community. He can be quickly reached via (+231) 886586531/777586531/777464018/ dakasen1978@yahoo.com

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