Successive repressive regimes, both military and civilian, in Liberia and the bitter experience of the fratricidal war (1989-1997) forced the Liberian Press into the tactical retreat of superficial and partisan reporting.
More than a year following the 1997 general and presidential elections, the need was acute for practical journalism. There was for pressing need for Liberians and the international community to be presented with not only the details of unfolding events in the country but with orderly, factual, balanced, and analyzed news.
The Liberian Press has come of age through a tacit maze of censure, tolerance, rejection, acceptance, and at the extreme, arbitrary prohibition. The pattern that juts from this maze is one of mutual mistrust and undue tension, which break and form intermittently to the ultimate disadvantage of the Government and the Media alike.
Along with the state, the Liberian Press is at a delicate crossroads of the rule of law and its benefits, or business as usual and a slide back to strife and bitterness. The latter option seems a forbidden consideration. The catch question then is, Should the Press lead the march toward progress, be led, or simply stand aloft as the watchdog?
The reality of our times is adamant that the Press must help identify the problems of society, set the pace for positive change by sensitizing policymakers and the public, and then monitors interaction of the social forces that will eventually determine the general direction in which the society is headed.
The Analyst newspaper was designed to meet these challenges of the new Liberian reality. The Analyst, which is published by the Liberia Analyst Corporation (LAC), is owned and operated by two Liberian journalists.
Members of the Board of Directors of the Liberia Analyst Corporation are carefully selected from the civil society to guarantee the independence and balance of the newspaper. The Board’s function is purely advisory.
The Analyst believes that the Press must help to identify the way forward and monitor the unfolding progress. The Analyst believes this prime objective can be institutionalized and dispensed. In pursuance of these objectives, The Analyst ascribes to the following public service role to itself:
- Voice concern for the plight of voiceless victims of crimes or misrule
- Seek, in collaboration with Human Rights Organizations, the abrogation of discriminatory or obsolete statutes and regulations by helping to sensitize policymakers and the society in general.
- Carry free public service announcements for less fortunate people’s organization. Bear the torch and toil bell for democracy and good governance through reportage and other public service measures.
Theory Backing The Analyst
Our theory is that Media Coverage has almost exclusively weighed so heavily on the already tense and overcrowded political field that the Press comes to exist in a state of dangerous dilemma; do or don’t and be damned.
This can be avoided. It is our conviction that the way to set off this dilemma, to break the stereotype, and to restore the Press’ credibility is to set into play a viable and circumspect arrangement. Such arrangement will seek to tap the untapped riches of our cultural heritage; expand the field of coverage from the boredom of polities; and water down the political tension and re-orientate the readership to a vast field of national and international interest thereby promoting reconciliation and reconstruction.
That viable and circumspect arrangement is the news organ proposed to be called The Analyst.
The Analyst will maintain the following permanent features and columns in pursuance of its objectives.
Column and/or Feature and Coverage
- Cultural Perspective: Looks at the ethnic diversity in Liberian and explore the fraternal ties that bind the various ethnic groups. Also explores the folklores and folkways of each ethnic culture;
- Analyst Doctor: Solicits the opinions and advice of authorities in the field of health, discusses sanitation problems, first aid techniques for home, drug abuse, and misuse, etc.
- Analyst Sports: Discusses topical issues in sports, calisthenics, and other health-related sporting techniques. Plus more!
- Education: Discusses career development, constitutional issues, and their legal implications, grammar, innovations in the sciences, etc.
- Analyst Religion: Explores the positive aspects of the various religious groupings with the intention of eradicating or minimizing misconception and prejudices, and promoting tolerance and co-existence
- 6. Politics: Discusses the legal and social ramifications of issues arising from politics. Expert opinions will be sought in this endeavor
- Analyst Panorama: Carries brief information about each of the thirteen political subdivisions of the country on variety of issues.
- Society: Discusses the evolution of the Liberia’s social strata in the light of crime, security, employment, economics, etc. Expert contributions will be solicited
- Analyst Focus: Brings under intense scrutiny and analysis, issues of national importance with the aim of finding amicable propositions
- The Farmer: Reviews the nation’s agricultural growth trends and discusses soil fertility and availability. Plus more! The Ministry of Agriculture and other small farmer associations will provide information for this column
- Analyst Forum: Carries public opinions and suggestions on national or regional issues.
In all of these, we will seek the assistance of MICAT, PUL, and other media houses and authorities in the country. We will also seek the expertise of foreign journalism institutions and foreign missions.