Journalists, non profits, citizens working together in Panama

Jul 32010

A big coalition of journalists, citizens and civil society organizations is being formed in Panama to track and reduce crime and corruption and prompt better governmental policies. 

It's been just a few weeks since our Website Mi Panama Transparente was launched to help journalists track crime and corruption using advanced online tools. Already, we have reached agreements with a number of partners.

The Panama Forum of Journalists for Freedom of Expression and Transparency International have given ICFJ and me as a fellow a very great reception. In a recent Forum's meeting, Juan Luis Correa, the former president of this non profit organization, said that Mi Panama Transparente is their flagship project, the most important program they have had this year to train journalists in investigative reporting techniques based on a Web-based digital map to track crime and corruption.

The Forum is coordinating all media companies involved in this project, particularly La Prensa, La Estrella and the Panama America. After a series of meetings, TVN-Channel 2 and from Medcom, the two national networks with the biggest penetration in the Panama market, accepted to participate in the project, to promote the Web site and to receive training in investigative reporting.With the two TV networks, Mi Panama Transparente will have nationwide promotion.

Our work has produced more additional support from a national network of non profits, civic clubs, unions and chambers of commerce working together under the name of the Gran Alianza Nacional por la Seguridad Ciudadana. When they knew about Mi Panama Transparente they decided immediately to support the project.

So, we have now a big array of media companies, non profits, and professional organizations working together to improve journalism in Panama and get better policies on transparency and public safety.