PM Commits to Protecting Investigative Journalism Under New Data Protection Laws

Prime Minister Andrew Holness says the Government will ensure that the investigative rights of the Jamaican media remain protected under the contentious Data Protection Bill.

He says Cabinet and Parliament will review concerns raised in the public domain about the proposed legislation.

The Press Association of Jamaica, PAJ, and the Media Association of Jamaica, MAJ, have expressed concerns about provisions in the Bill.

Mr. Holness was addressing last night’s opening ceremony of the Caribbean Broadcasting Union, CBU’s Annual Assembly at the Jamaica Pegasus Hotel in New Kingston.

CBU Head, Gary Allen, also addressed the event.

Mr. Allen articulated concerns that the Data Protection Bill in its current form could shut down news entities and place media houses in legal jeopardy.

The Prime Minister gave this assurance.

Mr. Holness says policymakers must achieve their objective of safeguarding the media’s access to information while securing sensitive data.

The Prime Minister said he’s convinced that media operating in the absence of duress is best for a democratic society.

Mr. Holness says he currently depends on traditional media to use their good offices to correct misinformation which often goes viral on social media and isn’t subject to an editorial process.

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