A STUDY carried out among Seychelles Journalists shows that only six out of the total of 30 print media journalists have had any formal training in the field, writes Dennis Itumbi for journalism.co.za.

The problem is even worse in the electronic media where only 2 out of forty journalists were trained journalists.

Conducted under the auspices of Seychelles Institute of Management (SIM) , the study also shows that there are vacancies for journalists but no qualified candidates to fill them.

In an exclusive interview with journalism.co.za, SIM's chief executive Anne Lafortune says that the institution would respond to the findings of the study by launching a part time course targeting practicing journalists.

“With the help of UNESCO, SIM has acquired the capacity to run such a course. The purchase of books and recruitment of Seychelles trainers and a consultant is underway,” said Mrs Lafortune.

Previously, there has been no formal training of journalists in the island known for its leisure tourism spots.
According to a website posting that gives details on how the initiative was conceived, project manager Paul Kang’ethe said: “At the time of proposing the project there was no institution offering media training locally, apart from a training unit within the Seychelles Broadcasting Corporation (SBC) that offered training to its employees only."

“The only training opportunities available for working print media journalists were enrolling for distance learning courses and attending seminars and conferences both locally and overseas."

“The project has built the capacity of the SIM to offer a certificate course in journalism and a diploma in the field in the future.”

Seychelles has since outlined an intention to introduce a media regulator for its growing media industry.