Ordinances on Press be debated in parliament, says KUJ
KARACHI- Expressing concern over the hurriedly-promulgated ordinances about the Press and publications, the Karachi Union of Journalists said on November 3, 2002 it was not party to any of the ordinances as it was not consulted on them.
At an extended meeting of the KUJ, held at Karachi Press Club and presided over by KUJ President Qamar Ullah Chaudri, it was noted with concern that the ordinances were promulgated just a week before the formation of the new government and convening of a national assembly session. The legislation should be made through parliament after taking the stake-holders into confidence and holding an adequate debate in the public on the issue, the meeting observed.
It was noted that the Pakistan Federal Union of Journalists (PFUJ) had already rejected the formation of the Press Council as such a body ought to be independent and include representatives of the PFUJ.
The defamation law was considered to be one-sided as the journalists were not consulted on the issue and the draft was not available with the PFUJ or the relevant government department, the meeting was told. Even the law about access to information was not accessible to the newsmen.
KUJ formed a committee comprising Hasan Abidi, Sabihuddin Ghousi, Khursheed Tanvir, Mazhar Abbas, Yousaf Khan, besides the KUJ president and general secretary. The committee will study the draft ordinances and prepare a report for approval and onward submission to the PFUJ.
KUJ also decided to demand an emergent meeting of the federal executive council of the PFUJ.
KUJ also decided to hold a seminar on the issue and create awareness within the community and in the public of these issues.