Liberia: Political Ownership of the Media Threatens Journalism & Societal Cohesion

(Monrovia, July 25, 2019): The Press Union of Liberia (PUL) is urging all power holders in the country to join the Union in soliciting ideas aim at ending the escalating wave of invectives and profanities characterizing radio broadcast throughout the country.

In a statement issued in Monrovia Thursday 25 July, the Union stressed the importance for influencers to pressure politicians owning radios to instruct their subjects to end the use of vulgar languages during broadcast.

Political ownership of the media in Liberia is hurting professional journalism and downgrading its standing as a major actor in democracy and governance.

PUL President, Charles B. Coffey, Jr. said “Political ownership of the media in Liberia is rapidly leaving professional journalists without a profession. People with political interest are deciding content of radios daily to meet their goals at the detriment of societal cohesion”.

The Union insists that before the advent of political ownership of the media in Liberia, the journalism profession was respectable and enviable. “In Liberia, journalists are now pawn in the political rivalry that is running the media amok at the service of politicians”, the PUL president said.

In the absence of politicians’ direct ownership of the media, the credibility of the media will be sustained and slanting of truth to suit political ownership will end, the PUL believes.

Liberia’s broadcast sector has many political ownerships; and some of these media outlets include: Renaissance Communications Incorporated (Truth FM & Real TV), Roots FM, Freedom FM, Kings FM & CLAR TV, Red PowerFM,D-15 Radio, and T-Five Radio arealso the most problematic broadcast outlets.

These stations ownerships include: Musa Bility of Liberty Party, Henry Costa and Benoni W. Urey of the All Liberian Party (ALP), Sam Saryor, Deputy Director at the National Security Agency (NSA), President George M. Weah, Abraham Zayzay of the Alternative National Congress (ANC), SenatorNyonblee Kangar-Lawrence of Liberty Party and Rep. Thomas Fallah of the Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) respectively. Some legislators are also owners of some of the most problematic broadcast outlets in the rural communities.   

The Union asserts that it is working with the Ministry of Information, Cultural Affairs & Tourism (MICAT), the Liberia Telecommunications Authority (LTA) and other partners to commence conversations engendering an end to the fast developing scourge in the country.

Meanwhile, the PUL is calling on broadcasters and Media Executives to forward their inputs to the LTA Draft FM Regulation to the Secretariat of the Press Union of Liberia. The garnered inputs will sum up to the position of the Union’s official position on the LTA Draft FM Regulation.


Daniel Nyakonah, Jr.

Secretary General


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