ST GEORGE’S, Grenada — Prime minister of Grenada Dr Keith Mitchell says he expects the relationship between his new administration and the local media to grow from strength to strength.
Mitchell was addressing his first news conference shortly after his return to office on Monday following general elections last Tuesday.
The re-elected Grenadian leader says all he is asking for is fairness of the local media when reporting especially on matters of a controversial nature.
“What I would like to know whenever statements are made about a government’s action that are controversial, is that we are given a chance before it reaches the public to respond appropriately… that’s all we ask for,” Mitchell said in the presence of a large contingent of local media workers.
“As long as we have an opportunity and are given play in the eyes of the public then I don’t think we have a problem…. That’s what we expect of you and I expect our relationship will continue to grow from strength to strength because I value your role and I know that your role is important in our success.”
Mitchell told local reporters, that while they may have had some disagreements in the past, he has always respected their role in the democratic process.
Mitchell said with the passage of time, he is confident that the level of respect between himself and the country’s media practitioners would have deepened.
“So I expect you, especially in the light where the people have voted for no opposition in the Parliament of the country, we expect you to play the role of being a critical observer of government’s work while at the same time ensuring that the truth always is what we are all searching for,” said Mitchell, who responded to a wide range of questions posed by reporters.
The prime minister also disclosed that he is prepared to accept critical opinion from the media, and believes members of his administration must also be prepared to follow suit.
The Grenadian leader encouraged the media to provide truthful information which he says would only enhance the work of the government.
“A government that does not wish to tolerate critical opinion is a government that will be doomed to failure,” Mitchell said.
“So you should not feel at any time that a criticism of an action of government would ever be a problem for me or members of my team and they would have to understand this.”