The 17th General Assembly of the Confederation of ASEAN Journalists (CAJ) in Manila, the Philippines, has issued a statement stating their determination to reinforce the organisation and its prestige.

The assembly from November 21 – 23 discussed orientations in the next two years and emphasised the intensification of its operation to unite journalists in the region, contribute to the development of ASEAN and a free, healthy and responsible journalism.

Participants raised amendments and supplements to CAJ’s regulations and agreed to accelerate the admission of associations of Cambodia, Myanmar, and Brunei.

They also agreed to establish a CAJ journalism training centre in Indonesia and set up a website for the organisation.

At the concluding session, the National Union of Journalists Malaysia handed over the CAJ’s chair to the National Press Club of the Philippines (NPC) for the next two-year tenure. NPC President Benny Antiporda was elected as the CAJ Chairman.

Vice President of the Vietnam Journalists’ Association (VJA) Ha Minh Hue pledged to work with other CAJ members for the organisation’s development.

Founded in 1975, CAJ includes journalists’ associations of Indonesia, Malaysia, Laos, the Philippines, Thailand, Singapore, and Vietnam. The VJA became its member in 1996.-VNA