Journalists call for more government involvement in media growth


Journalists call for more government involvement in media growth

Yanditswe October, 21 2019 at 13:41 PM

As a cross-section of media houses close down due to losses other media practitioners opt for other sectors away from journalism. Those still in the profession say that the government and the private sector needs to put in more effort to see that the industry does not lose out. 

Regine Akarikumutima is one of the media investors who had a publication on education. She says; ''I cannot say that I will want to ever in invest in media again, I had at least  4 publications on education then I went online, but nothing bore fruits.  People make big loses in this industry."

Akarikumutima and fellow journalists say most people do not see or understand the need to invest in the sector. However, they say that the government needs to put in more efforts in supporting the sector.

‘‘The government needs to support us so that even the population sees the need to do the same. They would give a good example," Akarikumutima added. 

Her comments were echoed by Oswald Mutuyeyezu, a local journalist. 

''I will give you an example, if you start of a new radio, you need to bring in the celebrities and those that have a following, not those that have the education, nooo that does not work. Those who close shop early is because they do not have a proper business plan.  For a media house to prosper one needs the best in the team, it’s like a football team you retain talent. Some, however, go into the profession and see that it’s not enough for them that's why the leave." Mutuyeyezu said. 

The head of the Rwanda Media Commission Cléphas Barore believes that the government should set aside a budget to support the media industry as it also plays an important role in building the communities.  

''We need to have people who understand the importance of the fourth estate, this can be the government or the private sector. the government should set aside a budget as they play a role in growing the community . we should have a strong media that can easily sell across the borders," Barore said. 

 There are no known numbers of media houses that closed shop as no census has been carried out. To date, there are 34 radio stations, 14 television channels, 36 newspapers, and 95 online publications. 

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