PM in cor­re­spon­dents’ din­ner

The Phnom Penh Post - - NATIONAL - Voun Dara

PRIME Min­is­ter Hun Sen will meet and dine with nearly 5,000 jour­nal­ists from across the county in his third me­dia cor­re­spon­dents’ meet­ing in Ph­nom Penh on Fri­day.

“I will meet jour­nal­ists dur­ing a sol­i­dar­ity din­ner on Fri­day, Jan­uary 11, at Koh Pich,” he an­nounced on his Face­book page on Thursday.

In the mes­sage, Hun Sen also posted a photo of his young self stand­ing next to other of­fi­cials with a cam­era strapped around his neck.

Laud­ing jour­nal­ists’ con­tri­bu­tions to Cam­bo­dia’s devel­op­ment, he wrote: “We had lost the op­por­tu­ni­ties to de­velop the coun­try for years due to war. Now that the coun­try has full peace, we need tourists, en­trepreneurs and for­eign in­vestors … pos­i­tive news will pro­vide them with con­fi­dence.”

The In­for­ma­tion Min­istry’s in­for­ma­tion and broad­cast­ing depart­ment di­rec­tor-gen­eral Phos So­vann told The Post that his min­istry is re­spon­si­ble for dis­tribut­ing venue ac­cess cards to the meet­ing at­ten­dees.

So­vann noted the in­crease in the num­ber of ex­pected par­tic­i­pants in the third edi­tion of the he an­nual gath­er­ing, with about 4,000 00 jour­nal­ists at­tend­ing the pre­vi­ous s one.

“The meet­ing will l be slightly dif­fer­ent from the e pre­vi­ous two be­cause this time me jour­nal­ists are al­lowed to choose their own seats on a first come, first served ba­sis. asis. The ear­lier ones can sit in front row, closer to the prime min­is­ter, er, and take pictures es with him,” he said.

The meet­ing is exxpected to host 5,000 0 peo­ple, in­clud­ing 955 5 re­porters for TV and d ra­dio sta­tions, 979 9 for print me­dia and d 380 for dig­i­tal me­dia. .

Be­sides mem­bers of the press, 276 rep­re­sen­ta­tives from pri­vate or­gan­i­sa­tions and 150 of se­cu­rity per­son­nel will also join the crowd. The re­main­ing at­ten­dants con­sist of govern­ment of­fi­cials from var­i­ous lev­els. “This meet­ing is very im­por­tant for the jour­nal­ists and [govern­ment] of­fi­cials to learn an and un­der­stand each other’s roles and re­spon­si­bil­i­ties,” So­vann s said.

Moeun Chh Ch­hean Nariddh, di­rec­tor of the Cam­bo­dian C In­sti­tute for Med Me­dia Stud­ies, who will at­tend the din­ner, said the Kingdo King­dom’s po­lit­i­cal sit­u­a­tion an and free­dom for jour­nal­ist nal­ists has im­proved. He said jour­nal­ists must adap adapt to the “Cam­bo­dian cont con­text” in “up­hold­ing in­ter in­ter­na­tional stan­dards to p prac­tice in­de­pen­dent rep re­port­ing” he said, ad­ding that the King­dom “ha “has its unique tra­di­tion and c cul­ture”.

“We sho should not re­port us- ing the Amer­i­can stan­dard, at­tack­ing their own govern­ment. In Cam­bo­dia, we should bal­ance it with pos­i­tive sto­ries,” Nariddh said.

Speak­ing to The Post, Koh Kong­based re­porter Ch­him Makara shared his ex­cite­ment about at­tend­ing the meet­ing, as it would be his first time.

“I think this would be a good op­por­tu­nity for the jour­nal­ists and govern­ment of­fi­cials to share ex­pe­ri­ences and ad­vice with each other.

“And for us [re­gional re­porters] es­pe­cially, we can share what is go­ing on in the prov­inces, in­clud­ing the many dif­fi­cul­ties we con­stantly face in ob­tain­ing in­for­ma­tion from cor­rupt of­fi­cials and crim­i­nal of­fend­ers. I ask the govern­ment to ad­dress these prob­lems,” he said.

The prime min­is­ter’s cor­re­spon­dents’ meet­ing was held for t he first time on Jan­uar y 14, 2017, wit h about 1,400 peo­ple at­tend­ing. The sec­ond meet­ing held on Jan­uar y 21, last year, saw t he pres­ence of a lmost 4,000 par­tic­i­pants.

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