Call to licence TT journalists
PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad – Science Technology and Tertiary Education Minister Fazal Karim today called for the licensing of journalists so as to improve the profession in Trinidad and Tobago.
“I am of the view that the time has come for us not only to graduate and to certify persons but to register them in a body and also to license them as practitioners and in so doing lift the quality of the bar in terms of the delivery of these services,” Karim said at the launch of the College of Science, Technology and the Applied Arts of Trinidad and Tobago’s (COSTAATT) Ken Gordon School of Journalism and Communication Studies.
Karim said Trinidad and Tobago needs an educated, enlightened and fiercely independent media, noting that “fiercely independent journalists operating in the traditions of the Fourth Estate will provide our citizens with the facts on which they can make informed decisions.
“That is a sacred responsibility, to move heaven and earth to get the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth and place that information fearlessly in the public domain. That is why Trinidad and Tobago needs media practitioners who through fearless, pro-active and thorough investigative journalism will tell us for example who the drug lords are, and how and where they operate.”
The minister said that fearless journalism might have anticipated the collapse of the Colonial Life Insurance Company (CLICO) and the Hindu Credit Union and would have also played a significant role in in educating young males and in dealing with the prevalence of gangs.
“The sacred profession of journalism in the context of the Fourth Estate is not for the weak, or the faint hearted or the uneducated. And this is why the launch of the Ken Gordon School of Journalism and Communication Studies is important.
“Trinidad and Tobago needs an institution committed to producing the kind of well informed journalist who will fiercely, independently and in a professional manner enlighten and educate our citizenry in the context of the media’s role as the Fourth Estate of government.” (CMC)