The National, Wednesday October 30th, 2013
OPPOSITION leader Belden Namah expressed disappointment with the country’s media, accusing it of suppressing important issues raised by the Opposition.
He named The National, Post-Courier and EMTV as not being impartial and allowing the government to interfere with their job of reporting without fear and favour.
He said as Opposition leader, he held accountable and kept the government’s check and balances while the media should do the same as partners in development instead of being gagged over important issues concerning the country.
“Today marks a sad moment in the history of this country when EMTV, The National and Post-Courier did not run the press conference I held on Monday regarding corruption in the country. This should hit the front page,” Namah said.
“The media organisations have been receiving directives from the Prime Minister’s Office stating that the matter I raised was prejudiced as it is before the court. The media should be free and impartial. There is no matter of prejudice that I raised.
“I must put it on record that there is no matter before the court, not even Paul Paraka. Paraka was only arrested but has not appeared before the court, while his applications to stop investigations into him were rejected,” he said.
“I raised matters of important issues on corruption, the letter by the prime minister. If I do not fight corruption, then who else should?”
Prime Minister Peter O’Neill said Namah should be more responsible in his words and actions.
“It is alarming again to see that a leader, who is an alternate prime minister of our country, continues to make statements that are highly defamatory … and trying to enhance his own political grandstanding,” O’Neill said.
“As I’ve said on many occasions, we don’t mind engaging in constructive debate on any issue whatsoever, but to suggest that there is a conspiracy going … is unacceptable and uncalled for from a leader who is holding on to that kind of position.
“I urge him to be a bit more responsible,” he said.
Namah said no one should stop matters he raised through media conferences, not even the government.