Chief Justice-designate Qazi Faez Isa has said that opinion writers do not qualify to be called journalists neither are those who are merely associated with a media house or newspaper.
“Our media is developing but globally opinion piece writers are not journalists. Not everyone who comes on TV is a journalist. Picking a phone, camera or association with a newspaper or media does not make one journalist I believe,” he said while addressing a ceremony of the Supreme Court Press Association in Islamabad on Wednesday.
For him, a journalist should not only report the news but also dig deep into the facts and background of the news while restricting from giving opinions during reporting. “He should give an opinion as minimum as he can and when he does, he should say that it is my opinion.”
President Dr Arif Alvi on June 21 approved the appointment of Justice Qazi Faez Isa as the next chief justice of Pakistan.
Justice Isa is set to take over after the incumbent Chief Justice Umar Ata Bandial attains superannuation on September 16. Isa will be sworn in as chief justice on September 17 by the president.
The Chief Justice-designate called for responsible journalism.
“There is truth and then there is opinion. You [journalists] sometimes forget the difference between these two things and forget to tell that this is news and the other is my opinion,” he said.
Reacting to his comments, journalist Hamid Mir said that Justice Qazi Faez Isa rightly said that not everyone associated with newspapers and TV is a journalist.
“Similarly, not everyone who sits on the judge’s chair in the High Court and the Supreme Court is a judge because the judge is bound by a code of conduct, but everyone know about several of our judges’ decision before their announcement,” he wrote on X, formerly known as Twitter.