AUGUST 28, 2014 By Hassan Gbassay Koroma
The Independent Media Commission (IMC) has urged journalists to report ‘positive’ issues around the Ebola outbreak in the country in a bid to prevent panic among the populace.
Addressing journalists at a press conference convened by the IMC at its Siaka Stevens Street headquarters in Freetown, Chairman Rod-Mac Johnson acknowledged that the media has done a lot in the area of reportage and educating the people about the preventive methods on the outbreak.
He said that journalists should be reporting stories about Ebola survivors to inspire courage in people that they can survive the virus if they go to the hospital early, instead of reporting only negativity about the outbreak.
He said journalists should always ensure they get the right update from the Ministry of Health and Sanitation on a daily basis before publishing or broadcasting any information to the public.
Also speaking, acting Senior Monitoring Research and Project Officer at the IMC, Mohamed Ferndo Conteh, said the current outbreak is an urgent public health issue to various nations, and that organizations have employed a variety of media approaches to increase general awareness and knowledge about the virus in order to change risky behaviours.
Conteh advised readers, listeners and viewers of newspapers, radio and television respectively to adhere to guidelines put forward by the Ministry of Health and Sanitation on how to prevent Ebola, and to stop visiting herbalists as they offer no cure for the Ebola virus.