ISLAMABAD: Principal Information Officer (PIO) Mian Jehangir Iqbal has said that the government firmly believes in freedom of press and freedom of expression in addition to being aware of the importance of regional press alongside national newspapers and was striving for resolving problems related to these matters.
He was talking to editors of local newspapers at a lunch hosted in his honour by Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) Council of Pakistan Newspaper Editors (CPNE) Vice Chairman (VC) Tahir Farooq and Daily Ittehad chief editor in Peshawar. Peshawar PID Director General (DG) Tariq Mahmood Khan and Shabidullah Wazir were also present on the occasion.
Tahir Farooq welcomed Mian Jehangir Iqbal and threw light on the problems faced by regional newspapers.
Mian Jehangir Iqbal said that the procedure of transparent distribution of government advertisements to regional newspapers would be implemented from next week and made it clear that no dummy newspaper would be given advertisements.
He emphasised that payments of government advertisements would directly be made to the newspapers, saying that there is complete harmony among information minister, secretary information and PIO in this respect.
He also made it clear that controversial payments would in no case be made against any claim. He asked the editors and owners of the newspapers to submit their suggestions on the government’s new advertisement policy in time to avoid any confusion towards this end and added that CPNE had already given its recommendations on proposed advertisement policy to the government.