Sunday, November 17, 2019

Political Influence On OECS Media Cited In Global Report

A new report released by Reporters Without Borders asserts that ‘many media outlets’ in the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) are under the direct influence of politicians, especially during elections.

The organisation’s 2019 World Press Freedom Index says it’s because officials can withdraw state advertising at any time and deprive them of income they depend on.

“In some of the Islands, political parties even own or have major shares in media companies, compromising journalistic independence,” it noted.

The report asserts that authorities are also monitoring social networks more and more closely, which encourages a degree of self-censorship.

“In 2018, reports of editorial censorship by the general manager of the Grenada Broadcasting Network brought into question the journalistic independence enjoyed by reporters working for Grenada’s largest media network,” it observed.

The publication expressed the view that Journalism is not a prestige profession in the countries that are members of the OECS.

“They receive little training and often abandon media work because it is so badly paid, an issue that particularly affects female journalists in the region,” it stated.

The OECS slipped 15 places in the press freedom ranking to 50.

It was at 35 in 2018.

One hundred and eighty countries are listed in the latest World Press Freedom Index.


  1. The political influence is very clear. What else will account for a decision to shakes hands or not to shake becoming national news. Why would I care if an individual is so displeased with another’s behaviour and as such did not shake his hands. How damn important was that handshake to the budget debate? Yet when the PM openly lied in parliament denying a statement that he made on the record it does not make the news. Lying in parliament is of greater national importance than not shaking hands.

    • Facts! We have a few newspapers and radio personalities that are basically mouthpieces for this govt. They coverage they had on government has completely changed after june 6 th 2016. Some were saying they were afraid now to do their jobs. Now are gleefully called their colleagues fake news very similiar to the orange commander in chief

      • The OECS is well bought it us all about power so you have to keen people in the dark. So they have to be told no truth or half truths. Hiding the facts

    • Well said writer…..there are too many far more important issues affecting us as a nation of 40 years for the media to be focusing on handshake … our security is in a mess just to name a few. There is a coast guard in Vieux-Fort for an entire year they do not have a boat. Why can’t they go investigate the reason . Can go on and on about things we should be concern with but no a handshake ….chooz

    • Bob, you notice these well put together paragraphs by Constrictor, Realist and Need help. They all made coherent points and on the topic at hand. Why did you have to then display your preschool level education by throwing in that line? The discussion here is about the media and political influence. We are discussing whether the media is focusing on issues of national interest or just pushing particular partisan lines. If the discussion is above your level, then just keep your fingers from the computer keys. So let me help you with you contribution by asking you directly: are you satisfied that the media really focus on important national issues? Do you believe that a handshake by politicians is such an important matter of national interest? Do you think it is right for the PM to lie to parliament denying that he said something which he said? Don’t you believe that it is necessary for the media to investigate the issue of the coast guard and bring the truth to light? Do you believe that the media should serve as mouth pieces of the government? Do you see the need for us to know what’s happening with the coast guard whether it is that it is down one year or four years?

  2. The media houses has been doing this for a very long time, i can recall that one radio station in Saint Lucia was shut down during the règne of Sir John, and reopen after months of silence, now shut down again by this UWP regime, this is stale news, politics is in command!

  3. I am not surprised that Gbn was noted in Grenada it had become the new norm cjy. It all new inexperienced persons. So even the rating with listenership has gone down. Perhaps are not fools

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