AFCON mascot Akwaba during the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations match between Cameroon and Guinea at the Charles Konan Banny Stadium in Yamoussoukro, Cote dIvoire on 15 January 2024 ©Lenoir Records/BackpagePix
Thursday Feb 01, 2024. 14:00
The International Sports Press Association (AIPS) has hit out at the shameful behaviour of journalists at the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations, calling for them to exercise more restraint.
Reporters of various nationalities have been seen celebrating wildly in the stands, while arguments have broken out between members of the media involving matches at the tournament in Ivory Coast.
An Ivorian with press credentials was filmed dancing topless after the Elephants’ win over Senegal on penalties in the round of 16 and there were clashes between journalists before the Guinea-Senegal game and during the Morocco-South Africa encounter.
Poor organisation and frequent schedule changes also resulted in squabbles as journalists rushed to catch buses to and from matches around the country.
“Being a journalist means behaving properly, and above all, exercising restraint. Certain behaviours are simply unworthy of a profession as noble as journalism,” AIPS said in a statement.
“Between pitched battles, attacks, invectives, it is a distressing spectacle that certain colleagues have been delivering to the world since the start of CAN 2023.
“The media workspaces (press gallery, mixed zone, conference room) have been transformed into a boxing ring, or even simply transformed into a dancefloor or performance zone hosted by media badge holders.”