The Prime Minister of Ethiopia Abiy Ahmed Ali is proposing the establishment of an African Union Continental Media house.
In his opening speech at the 35th African Union Summit in Addis Ababa that kicked off Saturday, Abiy noted that just like it’s important to have Africa represented sufficiently in international bodies; the continent’s media representation on the international stage is equally paramount.
The Ethiopian premier’s proposal emanates from what he describes as a negative portrayal of Africa in the international media. He decried alleged ‘misrepresentation of facts’ about Africa by the world’s leading news outlets.
“The endless representation (of Africa) as a continent troubled by civil wars, hunger, corruption, greed disease, and poverty is demeaning and dehumanizing and likely driven by a calculated strategy and agenda,” Abiy told the summit
According to Abiy, the ‘stereotypical and negative media representation’ of Africa not only ‘disinforms’ the rest of the world about the continent but also shapes the way African people view themselves.
“Telling our own stories and shaping our won narratives must be our priority,” he said
The proposed media house, in Abiy’s views, could be shaped in such a way that it provides authoritative news and information about Africa. He further wants the AU Media House established so as to ‘fight disinformation, promote our collective agenda and offer opportunities for Pan African voices to be heard.’