News Media Standards Act stirs controversy – viewed as threat to media freedom

News Media Standards Act stirs controversy – viewed as threat to media freedom

Written by Keshala Dias

06 Jul, 2017 | 10:14 pm

News1st reported on several occasions that a Draft Bill is being compiled to create laws which would allow journalists to be penalised or imprisoned for reporting. The Director General of Government Information stated that the Cabinet of Ministers have been informed of this document.

However, several ministers and parliamentarians say they are unaware of such a document.

The document, titled the Independent Council for News Media Standards Act, has provisions to compile laws to penalise journalists for reporting.

While the document proposes a council for news media, it says the Head of this Council should be a lawyer or a retired judge.

The news media, according to the document, is bound to reveal any source before this Council.

The future course of action with regard to this controversial document is being directed by an Executive Director of a NGO who is a British Canadian Citizen by the name of Toby Mendel and Dr. Pradeep N. Weerasinghe.

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