Senegal to disburse 1.9B CFA for Media Aid in 2024
By Sulayman Waan
Me Moussa Bocar Thiam, Senegalese minister of Communication, Telecommunications and Digital Technology has revealed that the Government of Senegal has set a staggering sum of 1, 900,000,000 francs (CFA) an equivalent of D195, 700,000 million as Press Support and Development Fund (FADP) to enhance public access to information.
“The financial envelope for press aid, now called the Press Support and Development Fund (FADP), was set at 1 billion 900 million francs CFA equivalent to D195, 700,000 million for 2024 compared to 1 billion 400 million francs CFA equivalent to D 144,200,000 million in 2023,” he told deputies who expressed their concerns about the press sector during the Parliament 14th Legislative Session in Dakar.
Moving forward, Minister Thiam told the Senegalese Members of Parliament (MPs) that there are 491 radio stations, more than 400 online sites, 54 daily newspapers registered.
For the 2023 and 2024 financial year, the minister will recall “that financial support was provided to 190 media house companies, 166 community radio stations as well as media organisations.
“Every day 54 daily newspapers are published. People must learn to supervise the sector which, I remind you, requires rigorous application of the rules which govern it.”
According to the minister, “…the principle of freedom, which means that everyone publishes a daily newspaper. It is regrettable to note that in the daily newspapers, there is no content” insists Me Moussa Bocar Thiam, who directed his speech at journalists: “He is someone who must give good information. If people no longer do journalism, the law will apply. We are within a regulatory framework,” he clarified.
Previously, continues the minister, in what was called Press Aid, the minister had discretionary power in the distribution of funds.
Today, with the 2021 decree, the structuring of this fund has been regulated. It is a committee, whose composition is fixed by decree, which distributes this fund, obeying precise criteria.
“Currently, the Minister has no power over this fund,” the minister claimed in his report. This transparency exercise must result in the publication of the list of beneficiaries to remove suspicions about the distribution of the Fund.
Since its independence in 1960, Senegalese government disburses funds as annual media subvention to enhance public access to information.