(JAMAICA GLEANER) – The Press Association of Jamaica (PAJ) says it has taken note that there has been no meaningful response from the government to its call for the resumption of post-Cabinet press briefings, despite the importance of the issue.
“The government has obviously decided to ignore our call for these important media engagements to continue,” says PAJ President Dionne Jackson Miller.
“We made this call publicly six weeks ago and followed up with letters to the Information Minister and the Office of the Prime Minister. However, there has been no indication that this is something the administration is taking seriously or has any intention of resuming any time soon,” she says.
There have been no post-Cabinet briefings held since the start of the year.
The last such briefing was held in November last year, and they were held very irregularly throughout 2017, the PAJ pointed out in May.
Recent developments and serious questions about the management of Petrojam are an example of an important national issue about which the media needs to ask questions, and underlines the importance of these briefings, Jackson Miller says.
“This is a tradition that successive administrations have continued in the interest of democracy and accountability, and we are extremely disappointed that Prime Minister Andrew Holness seems ok with the current state of affairs,” Jackson Miller says.
“Does he plan to be the Prime Minister who killed an effective and time-honoured method of engaging with the press? We hope not, and we now call for him to give his personal attention to this matter,” she added.