Board members of AMDISS elected a seven-member executive board committee to work with the secretariat to advance media development and advocacy for freedom of expression, and access to information for two years.

This follows a two-day Annual General Meeting that brought together members of AMDISS—who are station managers, and editors-in-chief of independent media houses from states—to discuss issues relating to policies, media development, and designing advocacy strategies that suit the current changing general environment even as the media space keeps shrinking.

In a free, fair, and credible election, Josephine Achiro Fartelo was elected chairperson, Chris Marol Maker as deputy chairperson, Chuol Jany Bol as secretary, deputized by Jima Francis Wani Abrama, Lily Nelson as treasurer, deputized by Charles Rehan Surur, and Denis Morris as a member of the executive board.

AMDISS has consistently maintained adherence to its constitution by conducting the Annual General Meeting accordingly to evaluate the work plan and strategic plan of action, looking at the successes, challenges, and opportunities that could be executed to advance the quest for vibrant, independent, and sustainable media in the country.

Addressing the AGM shortly after the elections, Koang Pal Chang—the outgoing chairperson, congratulated Josephine Achiro on her election as chairperson, urging her to exert more energy to attain the vision and mission of AMDISS.

On her part, Josephine Achiro, the new chairperson—elect, affirmed her keenness to collaborate with all members and non-members of AMDISS for the advancement of independent media in South Sudan.

She urged the media houses to focus more efforts on educating and amplifying the voices of the people whose voices could not be heard.

“Work for the public interest. Amplify their voices so that the people sitting in the realms of decision-making hear the plight of their people and act promptly to ensure service reaches where it is needed. The media should focus on strengthening accountability, and democracy, to ensure that the concerned authorities adhere to principles of human rights, and transparency and hold the authorities to account through keeping checks and balances. We aspire to have a media that stands firm to the principles of objectivity, independence, and neutrality, and works towards creating awareness on GBV issues and setting a platform for the people at the grassroots to have a say and participate in decision-making at this critical time. The media should look beyond entertainment and playing music when the plight of ordinary people is increasingly unattended to,” she advised.

She thanked the partners for maintaining long-standing support for independent media in South Sudan.