by Linda Straker
- Emmalin Pierre is newly appointed Minister for Information
- Took oath of office on Friday, 1 November 2019
Newly appointed Minister for Information Emmalin Pierre has given the assurance to not only review the vision, mission and goals of the Government Information Service (GIS) but to also review the achievement of the various media policy committees.
Pierre, who took her oath of office on Friday, 1 November 2019, had the Information ministry added to her other ministerial portfolios of Education, Human Resource Development and Religious Affairs.
The former minister was Winston Garraway. Prime Minister Dr Keith Mitchell did not give a reason for removing Information from Garraway who held that post since his appointment to the Cabinet following the 2013 general election.
At that time, Information fell under the portfolio of the Office of the Prime Minister. However, following the 2018 General Election, Information became part of the Ministry of Climate Resilience, Environment, Fisheries, Forestry and Disaster Management. Garraway will continue to serve as a Junior Minister with responsibility for the National Disaster Management (NaDMA) office.
“Priority at this time is to meet the team and to integrate them into the new ministry with a clear and common vision and mandate for the way forward. Also to hold a consultation exercise to identify the ways we build upon what we have already achieved by identifying ways to improve the service we offer to the general public,” said Pierre, who pointed out that to achieve such a goal will require a thorough review of the ministry’s mandate.
Pierre, who worked as a newspaper journalist with The Grenadian Voice when she entered the workforce, will also be focusing on the development of a media policy. Discussion for such a policy began in late 1990s and over the years various government-appointed committees held consultations and discussion with stakeholders.
During the Tillman Thomas National Democratic Congress (NDC) administration, a committee which was appointed by Senator Arley Gill who oversaw the information ministry progressed to the point of developing draft legislation for the media environment. The committee became defunct when Rawle Titus, who was appointed as the chairman while serving in his capacity as President of the Media Workers Association of Grenada (MWAG), resigned.
When asked about plans to reactivate the committee to develop broadcast legislation and or media policy, she said, “We will review and discuss the legislative agenda and make a proposal to cabinet for the way forward, including the role of media as critical in the education of a nation and a source of relevant and trusted information.”