Iraqi Prime Minister Muhammad Shia’ al-Sudani addressed the issue of financial and administrative corruption permeating Iraqi state departments and institutions, referring to it as a “heinous pandemic” during his speech at the official celebration held by the Iraqi Journalists Syndicate in Baghdad.
The occasion marked the National Day of the Iraqi Press and the 154th anniversary of the publication of the Zawraa newspaper in 1869 AD.
Al-Sudani called on the press to cooperate with the authorities in combating corruption while emphasizing the need to avoid targeting the federal government or the country’s political process. He stressed the importance of a fundamental role for the press as the “fourth authority” in strengthening the democratic system, which requires providing journalists with a decent livelihood and protecting them from exploitation for personal interests.
The Prime Minister expressed concern about the misuse of the press by those with “malicious intentions” who seek to “create chaos, make baseless allegations, or distort facts to undermine the work of the state or the political process.” He firmly rejected such practices as they harm the press’s reputation, which should represent the people’s voice and reflect their concerns and sorrows.
Al-Sudani highlighted the negative impact of certain media outlets, both domestic and international, that focus on broadcasting negativity for political or personal gain. He noted that such actions have contributed to external alienation, depriving Iraq of investment and development opportunities.
Recognizing the responsibility of the national press and its leaders, Al-Sudani emphasized the need to organize journalistic work, as some fail to distinguish between freedom of the press and chaos.
In support of Iraqi journalists and media institutions, on the occasion of the 154th National Day of the Iraqi Press, Prime Minister Al-Sudani directed the implementation of a package of procedures and directives.