Talk about PM-Media talk
Prof Dr. Abdul Jabbar Khan
It was a usual session. Prime Minister Imran Ahmed Khan sat with his media friends, actors and few journalists.
Whatever the outcome was it could be termed as a disclosure of a relief package in the background of the coronavirus spreads.
No doubt government is in a perplexed place whether a Curfew, lock down or a managed solution through restricted movement of people.
First of all who ordered to put this select group of media men on live coverage. As a professional journalist with 40 years of active exposure I am of the considered opinion that briefing with the PM is never a good thing to put on air live.
Recording could have been released on air later in evening hours. It gives better mileage to the government and help avoid the problem with a few arrogant characters.
Secondly no journalist wuth Economic background was invited. No one from Lahore or Karachi was invited. These, are all usually “Jack of all trade” including Klasra, M. Malik, Bhatti, Shamsi etc etc. Yes Nadeem Malik has good economic reporting experience not others.
Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh was asked to explain that he did very eloquent and wisely. Likewise NDMA chief Lt Gen Afzal and Minister for Food Security Khusro too took well their participatory share.
It has been quite visible that the ministry of information, Secretary, PIO and the exponent lady minister Mrs Firdous should have an exercise held at ministry in reaching to good decisions, especially when there are no good working relationships between the two sides, media and the ruling PTI.
The selection was bad rather poor, not one experienced journalist on socio-economic sector. It was devoid of adequate planning. It had no communication strategy. Such a crucial package was thrown in dust. It should have a Press Release to be well prepared and property worded carry the nutshell of the objective.
There were clear signs that some anchors wanted to show that they can confront it with the chief executive of the country. And they did it.
Now see in future. Make a decision about the PM media briefing or a press conference. Select relevant and not the hawks of media. If the issue was related to Jang’s Chief executive Mir Shakil, the government would have demonstrated its neutral strategy in NAB proceedings. Let NAB know that the investigation continue, Mir Shakil is to released on bail and ensure speedy justice through the law. Why the land acquisition in unlawful manner could be justified.
The importance and its pivotal position of media briefing was compromised by wrong selection of journalists and media anchor/ actors.
It is also because of a weaker administrative role of PEMRA as well as Ministry of Information. Why the APNS, PBA advertising on media is not looked into properly. If it could help the industry then it must be accepted. The tone and contents are offending however the government has the leverage to manage outstanding payments.
At least 15 per cent be deducted straight away. Outstanding bills be deducted for National Workers Fund
This NWF be managed by non political journalists for the welfare of media victims, workers laid off forcibly and families of those whose bread earners have died.
Prime Minister should continue its policy that is moving in right direction but poor people should not be dependent on Ehsas Kifalat alone, rather they should be engaged in productive means of socio-economic sectors.
In future one could see that this fiasco is not repeated. Working relationships should be built between the two sides. Objectives are obvious and common. So we could do it with sincerely and with segacity.
(Analysis by Prof Dr Abdul Jabbar khan, Author, Neuro-Economist, DevCom Strategist)