Bali: Chairman of the Indonesian Press Council Mohammad Nuh was elected as Chair of the South East Asian Press Council Network (SEAPC-Net) at the inaugural meeting of the SEAPC-Net General Assembly in Bali on Wednesday, December 4, 2019. U Ohn Kyaing from Myanmar and Asep Setiawan from Indonesia were elected as deputy chair and secretary general, respectively.
The former Minister of Education expressed his gratitude to all members of the four-nation Press Council delegation who attended the meeting. He hoped the results of the meeting would encourage collaboration to develop the press in the Southeast Asian region.
Meanwhile, SEAPC-Net directors consist of Agus Sudibyo from Indonesia, Kyaw Swa Min from Myanmar, Chavarong Limpattampanee from Thailand and Virgilio da Silva Guteres from Timor Leste. They will serve for two years
"This is a historic event because for the first time the Press Council in the region has an organized network," Chavarong Limpattampanee said, in a press statement issued on Wednesday, December 4, 2019.
He added that the next meeting in 2021 should be held in Myanmar. He also stressed that the Thai Press Council is committed to working together in various SEAPEC-Net activities.
Meanwhile, Deputy Chairperson of SEAPC-Net U Ohn Kyaing from Myanmar thanked the Indonesian Press Council for being willing to host. He is confident that SEAPC-Net will advance press freedom in Southeast Asia.
SEAPC-Net was established after a series of meetings of press representatives in the Southeast Asian region, namely Indonesia, Myanmar, Thailand and Timor Leste. In the 2017 Dili Declaration, four Press Councils recognized the role of the Press Council in each country.
In a declaration in Bangkok September 24, 2019, representatives of four Press Councils in Southeast Asia agreed to establish the Network of Southeast Asian Press Councils. It was also agreed that the Articles of Association would be approved in Bali on the sidelines of the Bali Civil Society and Media Forum meeting from 5 to 6 December 2019.