The Executive Mansion Press Corps (EMPC) has elected a new corps of leaders to steer the affairs of the organization for the period of three years.
Those elected officials of the Executive Mansion Press are Dennise Nimpson of Joy FM as Chairperson; Romeo Toe of Clar Television as Co-Chairperson; Varflay Kamara of the Liberia Broadcasting System as Secretary-General; Alvin Worzi of the Daily Observer, Assistant Secretary; and Anthony Q. Jiffan, Jr. of The Analyst newspaper, Financial Secretary.
Addressing the gathering, Presidential Press secretary Isaac Solo Kelgbeh pledged the support of his office to the newly elected leadership of the EMPC, noting that his office will work through the leadership to enhance the works of journalists covering the Presidency.
He told the group that his office will work in line with the Chief of Protocol office to ensure that the leadership or members of the Executive Mansion Press have a face-to-face interaction with President George Manneh Weah. Mr. Kelgbeh however, lauded members of the EMPC for conducting themselves in a responsible and professional manner during their electoral period.
Also speaking, Press Union of Liberia President, Charles B. Coffey, Jr. said the conduct of elections like EM Press are determining factors of the resolution of issues emanating from the auxiliaries.
Mr. Coffey said the cordial relationship that exists between the office of the presidential Press secretary and journalists covering the executive is as a result of trained and professional media practitioners heading that office.
The Press Union of Liberia President at the same time called on the office of the Press secretary to remain cooperative in protecting journalists, urging Executive Mansion reporters to exemplify characters that reflect the image of the executive mansion.
Deputy Presidential Press Secretary, Smith Toby, who proxied for Chief of Protocol, Madam Norah Finda Bondoo, said the Executive Mansion Press Corps will be challenging as of this year, especially with the office of the Presidential Press Secretary.
He said although it has not been easy for media practitioners covering the Executive Mansion to do their job effectively, the Press office has tried in handling some of the issues, indicating that there will be a reform which is intended to make EMPC more responsible and reflect a picture of the Executive Mansion.
Mr. Toby added that the reform will also help lift Executive Mansion reporters to corporate status and not just limiting them to the normal believe that journalists are always low-level persons in the Liberian society.
According to him, if other auxiliaries of the Press Union of Liberia will allow their reporters to remain in the low standard status, the Executive Mansion will not accept their reporters as such, but institute measures to lift the image of the Press Corps to show that they are covering the country’s highest office.
He also added that the office of Press secretary has and will never dictate with reporters about their reportage, but urged that everyone remains professional and ethical in the discharge of their duties.
Meanwhile, Executive Mansion Press Corps chairperson elect, Dennise Nimpson expressed gratitude to members of the Press Corps, especially those who supported her election and at the same time congratulating her opponent for the challenge.
She said although her team has won, but it is not about her but the organization and as her political slogan depicts, “together we can”, her leadership requires the collective effort of every member for its forward march.
Nimpson also noted that the leadership will ensure that members of the Press Corps are united, even though there has been no level of disunity among their members and even through the political period.