Faso Medias 2
Consolidating the role of the media in the citizen-led control of public initiatives
Calendrier : January 2017 – December 2018 / Budget global : €1.2m
In the wake of historic local and national elections, there are very high expectations of the new regime in Burkinan society. While certain policy directions remain to be defined for media organisations and civil society, a virtuous collaboration between media organisations, elected representatives, CSOs and citizens is key to the success of this democratic transition.
Against this backdrop of a democratic renewal, CFI and its partner UNALFA (Union Nationale de l’Audiovisuel Libre du Faso, National Union of Free Audiovisual Media of Burkina Faso) have launched Harmonies Citoyennes (Citizen Harmonies), a pilot component of the FasoMédias 2 (Faso Media 2) project. This component places citizens – in particular young people – and local stakeholders (media organisations, CSOs, elected representatives) at the heart of its actions relating to awareness, education with regard to citizenship and citizen-led control of public initiatives.
In 2018, the journalists trained the previous year recorded three radio programmes intended for the general public in the towns of Bobo-Dioulasso and Fada N’Gourma, with the mayor of the municipality taking part in each case. Thirty local elected officials and thirty civil society organisations (CSOs) from these two towns have also received awareness training in citizen-led control of public action and been trained in communication techniques, for example by means of practical modules such as “How to communicate better with your voters” intended for local elected officials or on “Using social media for CSO communication”.
Public speaking competition
Still in Bobo-Dioulasso and Fada N’Gourma, media organisations held a public speaking competition for young people, providing a forum of expression for Burkinan citizens keen to express their expectations and demands somewhere other than in the street. A hundred young people from Bobo and Fada aged between 16 and 30 years old, selected from more than 200 candidates, took part in six days of training in public speaking and debate.
They learned the best way to defend their ideas through their words, so as to be able to participate in public debates to a greater extent. Coaching sessions led by the Toastmasters association rounded off these training courses and prepared these young people for the challenges of the citizen public speaking competition: prepared speech, improvisation and idea debate.
In Bobo-Dioulasso and Fada N’Gourma, the activities of Faso Media 2 left room for local initiatives, originating from the various stakeholders mobilised throughout the project. The mayor of Bobo-Dioulasso also wishes to continue to hold consultation programmes with the general public and has already sought the assistance of the local media in organising them. The two areas are also seeking funding to organise the subsequent editions of Citizen Harmonies.
“In a democracy, there needs to be constant dialogue, and the use of violence is a collective failure that is likely to undermine the rule of law. The presence of media and civil society organisations is a safeguard against abuses and dangers of all kinds. While fear of the police serves to build citizenship, the existence of a free media and of civil society organisations provides local elected officials with certainty that their actions will be scrutinised and checked.”
Albert Ouedraogo, professor of oral literature at the University of Ouagadougou and Faso Media 2 speaker
Faso Media 2: Artist and Citizenship:
Regional final in Bobo of the Citizen Harmonies component of Faso Media 2:
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