The Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the West Africa Water and Sanitation Journalists Network (WASH-JN) www.wash-jn.net kicked off in Monrovia, Liberia yesterday.
The meeting brings together 17 representatives of National platforms of Journalists reporting the water and sanitation sector in 14 West African countries-Nigeria, Senegal, Mali, Benin, Togo, Ghana, Niger, Cote d’Ivoire, Liberia, Guinea, Cameroon, Sierra Leone and Guinea Bissau.
Top of the agenda on the AGM which lasts for one week is a review of the progress so far achieved by the regional body since its formation in 2010, discussion on the 2012 work plan, and hands on training on how participating journalists can use the new media to report the sector better.
Welcoming delegates to the meeting, Team Leader of WaterAid in Liberia, Mr. Apollos Nwafor stressed the need “for the media to positively influence National governments to address the challenges in the sector through policy action, funding support and better programme management.”
Also addressing the delegates, Mohammed Abdul-Nashiru, Regional Advocacy Manager, WaterAid in West Africa said: “the value of the network is going to be determined by the quality of stories that its members published on WASH issues, particularly the stories that focus on the challenges being faced by the poor in accessing water and sanitation services”.
“We need to get the media to advocate that government should put more resources in the sector and also prioritise the sector”, said Abdul-Nashiru.