Today's meeting of the Legislation Management Committee of the National Assembly has univocally noted the leadership of Nepal Media Council should be prestigious and distinguished.
Council's key responsibility is to regulate the media sector the fourth estate of the nation.
Members of the parliamentary committee suggested inserting a legal arrangement to appoint a prestigious person as a coordinator of the committee mandated for recommending office-bearers of the Media Council.
The Upper House committee members also suggested making arrangement to ensure representation from all seven states in the Council structure. Media is recognized as a fourth estate so the Council entrusted with the responsibility of regulating media sector should have representation from each state, said committee member Brikhesh Chandra Lal.
The Council needs capable and prestigious leadership to regulate media in a respectful manner bearing in mind of media's watchdog role to keep vigilance on all the state systems. So, the Council role is not only limited to justice dispensation, investigation and enable environment for free press, he added.
He recommended that a person having Master's Degree along with 25-year journalism practice or specialization who is eligible to be appointed as the justice should be recommended to the chair of the council.
The members also stressed the need to participate the House of Representatives and National Assembly in the recommendation process to make the Media Council functional and dignified. The members suggested including National Assembly chair, President of House of Representatives' committee to llok after media sector and a woman lawmaker in the committee to nominate office-bearers of the Council.
It may be noted that the incumbent justice of Supreme Court was appointed the chair of the Council before 1991.
NA member Radheshyam Adfhikari also suggested including legal provision stating that a person eligible to become the apex court justice can only be appointed the Council Chair in keeping with the functional gravity of the regulatory institution.
Another member Ram Narayan Bidari clarified, Amendments to the media council bill tabeld to the parliament were made to give a feeling to the general public that media sector should be respected as the fourth estate of the state.
The members also said the Council's leadership should have a sense of justice along with other competencies. The appointment would not be proper if the recommendation was weak, the members added.
Thery also recommended rethinking the current provision of appointing ministry secretary as a coordinator and members appointed by ministry from among the knowledgeable persons in the area of information technology or social sector and senior journalist in the recommendation committee.
Source: National News Agency Nepal