First-ever Niue Media Association officially launched

A small gathering of government dignitaries, diplomats and invited guests joined in the official launch of the Niue Media Association last Friday evening at Hio Cafe and Bar in Tuapa. 

The event was the culmination of months of work by Esther Pavihi and her small team to secure funding from Australia’s Pacific Media Assistance scheme to draft a constitution and code of ethics for the first media association in Niue. 

Niue’s only media Broadcasting Corporation Senior Producer Esther Pavihi delivered the opening remarks. 

“We are grateful to the Australian Pacific Media Assistance Scheme PACMAS for funding the establishment of the Niue Media Association, the drafting of our constitution and code of ethics, and for hosting our launch.”

“We are grateful for the support and advice from Kate Seymour from PACMAS and Makereta Komai from PINA over the past few months.”

Esther Pavihi explained the meaning of the logo designed by NZ-based Niuean Renata Cross.

“We thank Renata for the logo, which symbolises the embryonic stage of the media association in Niue. Like this young plant with its new leaves, our media association will need nourishment and support as we grow.”

“There is still a lot of work here in Niue to improve awareness and understanding of the role of journalists and the media in our community. Having this association in place is yet another step to improving this relationship and understanding between the media and the people,” says Esther. 

Australia’s High Commissioner Louise Ellerton addressed the gathering and congratulated the newly established media association. 

“In May this year, the Australia government announced additional funding to expand our access to Australia media content and boost media connections in the region under the Indo-Pacific broadcasting strategy. This support will help expand transmission infrastructure in the Pacific.”

“The funding will also build, boost, bolster regional media resilience and boost journalist connections, elevate voices and the stories of the pacific.”

Australia High Commissioner Louise says that “in Niue, our support to local media is long-standing. The construction of the BCN studio in 1995 was funded by Australia and officially opened on Constitution day 23 years ago.”

“Our support through PACMAS has enabled local journalists to participate in regional training workshops and activities such as reporting women leaders program. PACMAS has also provided funding to the Niue Star which recently celebrated 30 years. Congratulations,” says H.E. Ellerton. 

The Minister of Broadcasting is Premier Dalton Tagelagi but he was not able to attend. Instead his Member Assisting the Minister Sinehemana Hekau spoke on behalf of the Premier and the government. 

“Looking at the broader picture, free and independent media has a somewhat regulatory role in promoting peace, justice and strong institutions. You have the power to inform, promote and influence members of the public.”

“As your government, we wish you well in your new establishment. May you educate your members the appropriate code of ethics to guide them in their work and may your constitution give you the foundation for your success now and in future.”

The final remarks were delivered by the Chairperson of the BCN Board Rev. Scanland Mitiepo who spoke about growing the interest of young people in media and acknowledged the workers from Fiji who have been helping for many years

“I hope as we move forward from today, we will attract more young people towards a career in the media. I want to also acknowledge our staff from Fiji and other countries who over the years came to Niue to help our media industry. May this small gathering grow into a much larger gathering in years to come as we continue to grow our media association.”

The launch of the Niue media association has already received many messages of congratulations from media colleagues in the region. 

The launch is timely as Niue will next year host journalists and media outlets at the 7th Pacific Media Summit organised by Pacific islands News Association PINA. 

Esther Pavihi says “we are excited to be hosting our colleagues from around the region for the Pacific Media Summit next year and look forward to meeting them all here in Niue.”

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