WE, the leaders of journalists trade unions of the Federation of African Journalists (FAJ) meeting in Abuja, Nigeria, on 20-21 July, 2011 at the Pan African Conference to improve the working conditions of journalists in Africa under the theme “The Fruit of our Labour: A New Agenda for Improving Conditions of Journalists in Africa”,;
APPALLED by the poor working conditions of journalists and the lack of respect for labour rights in the media industry in Africa;
NOTING with concern the poor implementation of collective bargaining agreements;
DEEPLY DISTURBED by the insecure working environment and career prospects which gravely impact on ethical journalism;
APPRECIATING the invaluable support of the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ), the Friedrich Ebert Stiftung (FES), and the collaboration of the International Trade Union
Confederation (ITUC), and the Global Union Federations GUFs;
1. Commit ourselves to launch the campaign to improve the condition of service of journalists in the media industry in Africa.
2. Fight for the labour rights of journalists as the fundamental basis of social justice, human rights and democracy.
3. Defend, expand and strengthen the collective bargaining powers of journalists’ unions, associations and affiliates as a means of securing better working and living conditions
4. Strengthen the unions and associations by recruiting and organising members in workplace;
5. Defend the rights of freelance and casual journalists, by organising and protecting their rights in collective agreements;
6. Defend workers’ rights to organise, and call for the implementation of labour laws to protect journalists.
7. Work to ensure better enforcement and monitoring of labour laws that are in conformity with international labour standards
8. Ensure that appropriate legislation is enacted where they are lacking, to protect the working conditions of journalists;
9. Seek to develop practical solidarity with the ITUC, GUFs and the trade union movement against the multinationals that dominate the media industry in some of the countries.
10. Support the struggles of journalists and their unions against regimes that oppress their labour rights, freedoms and well-being, and show active solidarity.
Done in Abuja, July 21, 2011