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Study finds weaknesses in media Coverage, provides remedies A study conducted on the performance of the media both print and electronic in the country has established weaknesses in news gathering techniques, sourcing, balancing and comprehensiveness of information.

ZA KISWAHILI

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Some media outlets continue with what can be termed as ‘die hard’ attitude as they slant their coverage of election issues basing on their political orientation.

These outlets include public newspapers and electronic media from both sides of the Union which in their reporting give more space to ruling party candidates while other media outlets favour the opposition.

Those giving more space to the ruling party candidates only report negatively of the opposition likewise those backing the opposition also portray negatively candidates of the ruling party.

These observations are recorded in the fourth weekly monitoring report on the election campaign produced by the Media Council of Tanzania (MCT).

However the overall media mix, shows that there are papers and media outlets which stand out as impartial providing fair coverage and balancing their stories.

A close examination of the report shows that some media outlets do not weigh issues by reporting things as uttered in campaign rallies. By doing so, they operate as “conveyor belts”.

A senior official of the Council has noted that editors should exercises their responsibility as gate keepers by ensuring that unsubstantiated allegations are not reported in order to limit harm and hate speech.

Un-corroborated allegations should only be reported if they are balanced by providing right of reply to those targeted.

In addition to producing the weekly report the Council has also started to produce by weekly newspapers on the elections – the English edition is titled The Election Monitor and the Kiswahili edition is Darubini.

You can access The Election Monitor, Darubini and the   weekly monitoring reports on the Council’s website –www.mct.or.tz.

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