My Journalism Experience in South Sudan By: Gabriel Joseph Shadar

Report
Great Opportunities
Being a journalist in South Sudan provides me with a richness of sources
for journalistic content: the cultural diversity; politics; conflicts; natural
disasters; infrastructure development; legislation; civil society…
OPPORTUNITY TO BE PART OF SHAPING THE FUTURE
OF THIS NATION BY TREATING THE ISSUES AT HAND
WITH PROFESSIONALISM, THAT IS, IMPARTIALITY,
OBJECTIVITY AND RESPONSIBILITY;
OPPORTUNITY TO QUESTION GOVERNMENT AND
STAKEHOLDERS AS TO WHY THINGS ARE WHAT THEY
ARE;
OPPORTUNITY TO LEARN THINGS IN THE RIGHT WAY
FROM THE START, WHENCE LAYING A FOUNDATION
AND EXAMPLE OF PROFESSIONAL JOURNALISM RADIOWISE.
 Chance of building a popularity cult as
recognition of good work: people can
distinguish between bad and good
journalists the same way they can
differentiate between corruption and
transparency.
 Always watchful of the complexity of culture
and attitude in South Sudan as work ethics
are still in the process of development and
consolidation;
 Have to deal with situations where team has
little human resources and capacity:
language, creativity, courage, responsibility,
etc, etc,
 Have to deal with trauma, bias and stress:
one runs the risk of joining discourses that
takes ethnic lines or political divisions at work
place or in public;
 Treat a ground with no maps or direction,
except for journalistic Code of Conduct and
professionalism;
 Hazardous environment: might be stopped
anytime anywhere for the assumption of being in
the wrong place at the wrong time and for doing
the (assumed) wrong thing.
 Security and logistical and infrastructure
conditions have prevented access to areas with
potential content: Lokiliri Payam, Central
Equatoria State witnessed abduction of more
than 160 children between 2011 -2012; famine
and draught in Kapoeta, Panyjaar, etc, etc;
 Newspapers appearing and disappearing with
alarming speed, and some of those in
circulation always remind you of your
grammar and spelling;
 Use references from NGO’s and foreign
sources for information that could otherwise
have been provided by an institution nextdoor;
 Developed the attitude of not speaking much
about what I know as I don’t have the means
or skills for investigative reporting: attempts
to investigate might result into being
investigated yourself or – you know.
 Little interaction with the older generation of
South Sudanese journalists and our
generation of journalist being divided into
conflicting groups;
 Having a map and direction: Medial Laws
 Better infrastructure;
 United journalists;
 Satisfactory service to my listeners

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