Newsletter

Media Dialogue Newsletter #25

Media Dialogue Newsletter
Bishkek, 10 December, 2020

On December 10-11, round table discussions about the current status and challenges to freedom of speech, the legitimacy of the constitutional reform, and constitutional deliberation are taking place in Osh city with participation of representatives of local municipalities, public organizations, civil activists, professional communities, and media sector of Batken, Jalal-Abad and Osh regions. Such discussions are conducted with the support of the Media Dialogue project jointly and co-organized with the Coalition of the media sector, civil society organizations, professional communities, bloggers / digital activists.

On December 10, with the Media Dialogue project’s support, the Coalition conducted a round table discussion for lawyers and legal experts on the risks and challenges of the new draft Constitution of Kyrgyz Republic in Osh city. The lawyers from Batken, Jalal-Abad and Osh regions took part in the round table. The event’s primary purpose was to discuss the legal analysis “Risks in the Draft of the new Constitution of the Kyrgyz Republic: 61 Amendments”, which was recently presented to the attention of the general public. Aydin Bakytbek, an expert on constitutional law, noted that “the proposed constitution completely lacks a system of checks and balances between the branches of government, and the powers of the president are unlimited.”

Within the framework of the Media Dialogue project, the Westminster Foundation for Democracy conducted an Analysis of the legal framework for the Right to Information in Kyrgyzstan. The analysis was carried out by international expert Toby Mendel with the support of national expert Nargiza Abduraimova and focused on on the Law on Access to Information, the Law on Guarantees and other related laws.  The analysis recommends the introduction of appropriate amendments to the law, which would improve it in the long term.

The grant recipient of the Media Dialogue grant programme, the “GovoriTV” Multimedia Information Agency, has completed the Achyk Ait grant project.  15 Achyk Ait episodes have been released over the last three months on important socio-economic topics and on issues related to the freedom of speech and freedom of the media. “GovoriTV” noted that the Achyk Ait program will continue to be broadcasted on a weekly basis with the news agency’s own funds. You can watch the last release of the program on the topic “Is the discussion of the Constitutional reform legal today?” with the participation of Doctor of Law Saniya Toktogazieva and lawyer Nurbek Toktakunov here.

 

The Media Dialogue project is funded by the European Union and runs until end of 2021. Its objective is to harness the power of the media in safeguarding conflict-free elections. We have been delivering training and capacity-building activities to help media actors supply accurate and trustworthy election-related content to the citizens of Kyrgyzstan so that they can make informed choices.

We work with print, online and broadcast media outlets as well as production houses, individual journalists, online activists and influencers. Our events serve to improve their editorial standards, upgrade their digital skills, and inject an innovative spirit into the content they produce. The project is engaging government officials, parliamentary deputies, non-governmental and civil society organisations as well as members of the Central Electoral Commission and its territorial branches in an effort to create a more conducive election environment. We collaborate with the media and civil society communities to enhance self-regulation in the media sector and make it more robust and resilient to political manipulation or restrictive measures.

Our programme includes activities to increase the economic independence of the media by providing monetisation workshops, innovative digital content generation events and innovative media start-ups initiatives. We also cooperate with Kyrgyz universities and institutions providing journalism education to boost their curricula and link them up with European counterparts through exchange programmes. All our activities are delivered by a mix of international and local trainers and consultants exploiting areas of expertise offered by each of the Consortium Partners.

For more information about the Project or current and forthcoming opportunities, please get in touch with our Communications Specialist Asylgul Akimjanova at +996504222405, asylgulakimjanova@epd.eu or the Project Manager, Cholpon Nogoibaeva, cholponnogoibaeva@epd.eu.

In response to the evolving COVID-19 situation, Media Dialogue has been adjusting its activities in line with WHO recommendations and national regulations of the countries involved in the project. Our priority is not to expose any beneficiaries, experts or staff to risks associated with the virus but at the same time to continue delivering the planned Action with every effort made to meet its objectives and maintain its effectiveness in the limiting and challenging circumstances.

Newsletter #25

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