RAL, ADMA Conclude Symposium on Extractive Sector Reporting with Support from ArcelorMittal Liberia

Ganta, Nimba County – The Reporters Association of Liberia (RAL), in collaboration with Africa Development Management Associates (ADMA), has successfully concluded a day-long regional symposium on extractive industry reporting, with over fifty journalists in attendance in Ganta, Nimba County.

RAL holds the distinction of being the largest auxiliary of the Press Union of Liberia.

The symposium, held under the theme “Promoting Responsible Journalism for Socio-economic Development,” brought together reporters from Montserrado, Bong, Nimba, Margibi, and Grand Bassa Counties.

During the ceremony, Willie N. Tokpah, President of the Reporters Association of Liberia, highlighted that the symposium aimed to enhance journalists’ capacity to report on the extractive sector, equipping them with the necessary skills and knowledge to effectively communicate the industry’s complexities.

President Willie Tokpah emphasized the multifaceted benefits of such seminars, stating, “Firstly, it will empower journalists to report accurately and comprehensively on the sector, fostering transparency and public understanding.

Secondly, the RAL president believes it will contribute to creating a more informed public discourse, facilitating a constructive dialogue between industry stakeholders and the community.”

Tokpah added that the Ganta symposium would focus on ArcelorMittal Liberia operations, featuring presentations from the company’s top management.

“The impact of AML’s operations extends far beyond its economic contributions, positively influencing social development and community well-being in Liberia, especially in Bong, Nimba, and Grand Bassa.

Thus, we believe it is important to increase public awareness of the company’s operations,” noted President Tokpah.

He expressed the belief that when journalists understand Liberia’s natural resource sector, reporting on it will benefit citizens and the country through increased transparency and accountability.

President Willie Tokpah also appealed to ArcelorMittal Liberia’s management to support the entity’s office space project and praised AML’s contribution to the RAL Symposium, urging a closer relationship between AML and RAL members for enhanced access during investigative and reportorial duties.

In attendance, Nimba County electoral district #2 Lawmaker Nyah Flomo emphasized the extractive sector’s crucial role in Liberia’s income generation and encouraged Liberian journalists to be proactive partners, ensuring effective and accountable extractive functions.

McDonald S. Kerl Sr, Technical Officer at Liberia Extractive Industries Transparency Initiatives (LEITI), lauded AML, AMDA, and RAL for organizing the symposium. He highlighted LEITI’s role in ensuring transparency and accountability in the management of Liberia’s extractive resources.

ArcelorMittal Liberia’s Head of Sustainability and External Relations, Marcus Wleh, expressed gratitude to the Reporters Association of Liberia for organizing the event, pledging the company’s ongoing support for the communities where they operate. He encouraged vigilance from journalists and requested them to bring any issues to the company’s attention.

The symposium, attended by more than seventy reporters, received acclaim for its impact. Attendees praised RAL’s leadership, ADMA’s support, and AML’s contribution to the event, considering it an extensive eye-opener.

Reporters committed to applying the knowledge gained at the training in their respective areas of work.

The one-day media symposium brought together media stakeholders, organizations, as well as local authorities, and political leaders, and was supported by ArcelorMittal Liberia through its partner firm, Africa Development Management Associates.

ADMA is a highly committed Team of Associates with requisite capabilities in two key developmental pillars including proven professional and technical competencies and experiences in formulating and managing national and regional development and diplomatic policies, strategies, initiatives, and institutions in Africa.

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