– Adam Harris on resignation from Kaieteur News
DECLARING that he is “too old to fight-up behind anything,” Editor-in-Chief (EIC) of the Kaieteur News, Adam Harris, has confirmed that he has resigned from that media house, and is currently working on developing a television newscast at Channel 9.
He also disclosed having plans to start an Online publication, and working on a radio feature.
Harris has been with the Kaieteur News since 1994, when it was a weekly publication and he worked as a contributor. After the paper developed into a daily, Harris began working with it full-time as EIC in 2008. Harris, 71, said his resignation has been effective since April 1.
He said he had indicated to the owner of the newspaper, Glenn Lall, that he’d intended retire, but acknowledged that there were issues between himself and Lall.
“For as long as I can remember, we have had problems with issues over and over and over,” Harris said. “He would have one view, and I would have another, and we would reconcile. But after awhile, sometimes you just feel that there is no need to continue to disagree over simple things; you get tired. That was it really; we have our own issues, and I said I didn’t agree with it. And once you get disagreements, and you’re old, you walk away. In my case, I too old to fight-up behind anything.”
Asked whether their latest disagreement had anything to do with political differences, Harris replied, “At any Media House, the whole editorial are people of differing political views, but the owner dictates the tone of the paper. You can only argue for professionalism; you would not want to carry anything untrue. It depends on where you are working, and how strong you can argue against it.”
The Kaieteur News, over the past few months, has been distinct in its political bias of the governing ‘Coalition’, and backing the People Progressive Party/Civic (PPPC)/, a party the newspaper once stood firm in calling out for its corruption while e in power, from 1992 until 2015.
Harris noted that it was the newspaper’s determination to go where other newspapers dared not, during the PPP/C’s reign that led to its rising to become one of the country’s most popular dailies. “We looked at issues that people would want to read. During the crime wave, from 2002 – 2006, we took a decision of how we were covering it, and a lot of brave souls went into the ‘belly of the beast’ to get the stories that nobody else wanted to do, so John Public gravitated towards the newspaper,” Harris related.
The veteran journalist said that since leaving the newspaper, he has been bombarded with offers for other work, but is taking his time about accepting.
“There’s a lot of things, but there’s only one me, so I will have to start saying ‘No’ to a couple of people who have been approaching me. The plans are many; but right now, I’m doing the Channel 9 newscast, working to frame a newspaper, and working to have a feature on radio,” Harris shared.
With over 45 years in the journalism industry under his belt, Harris shot to fame during his years as an Information Officer with the then Ministry of Information, which he started with in 1973. Harris is also well known for his years of working as a teacher in Bartica.
A national awardee for his years of service to the media sector, Harris has worked at a number of media houses in varying positions, including television news casts at the Evening News, which aired on Channel 28; and Prime News, which started in 2000.
Harris has also worked in the 80s at the New Nation, and also formerly served as EIC of the State-owned Guyana Chronicle newspaper, where he had first begun working in 1980 as a News Editor. After a short break, he returned in 1988, again as an editor, and was made EIC in 1989.
With the change of government in 1992, Harris tendered his resignation from the Guyana Chronicle, and later found it difficult to secure a job due to political influences during the People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C)’s time in government.