Communication Minister, Rene Emmanuel Sadi has this day, presented to parliament, a new bill to regulate communication in Cameroon. These are some major aspects of the new communication bill that concern social communication and online media outlets as presented by the Minister in his speech to parliament:
- The creation of optimal legal conditions for an in-depth cleaning up of the social communication sector
- The establishment of a normative framework aimed at supporting social communication activities and strengthening the economic viability of structures
- The establishment of a coherent system of regulation and professional self-regulation within the national media landscape
- The integration of technological changes in the legal organization of the sector of social communication;
- And a better readability of the problem on the decriminalization of press offenses
To achieve these, here are some of the measures the Ministry of communication intends to take through the bill:
- Create a formal delimitation of the activities of social communication
- Institute a reform on the status of journalists and auxiliaries to the journalistic profession, with particular emphasis on the criteria for identifying journalists, their working conditions and remuneration.
- Introduce thirty (30) working definitions, with a clear and precise definition of the concept of social communication right from the start.
- The legal organization of online press activities. This includes the involvement of the Administration in charge of the Communication sector in the prior declaration procedures of the written press and online press;
- Compel the declaration of certain activities related to social communication activities
- The establishment of an economic regime for social communication activities comprising the rules general state support for the private sector
In addition to these, the Ministry of Communication also intends to categorize offences related to social communication. Minister Sadi believes this allows for “a better readability of the problem on ‘the decriminalization of press offences’”
Participating partners in all these will include (but are not limited to) the National Council of Communication, the Professional Order of the National Press and the Press Card Commission.