Mrs Brigitte Boccone-Pagès, President of the National Council, welcomed journalists on Thursday January 18, and spent much of her New Year address congratulating them on their valuable work.

“First of all, I would like to salute your profession. While the multitude of sources accessible to the population ends up demonising the very meaning of the word “information”, your role is more crucial than ever. You are the witnesses, the narrators and the keepers of the stories that shape our daily lives. Your work is invaluable because it provides Monegasques, employees, residents and friends of the Principality essential access to reliable and informed information.”

The President outlined the priorities and coming work schedule of the elected body, mentioning the Fontvieille shopping centre development, housing for Monegasques, and the need for better traffic management. Importantly, Mrs Brigitte Boccone-Pagès also stated that current relations with the Government have improved markedly since a difficult period in 2023.

But, much to the satisfaction of many reporters present, the President returned to the topic of information and the need for quality journalism. After taking a swipe at the tendency of social media to distort the truth, Mrs Brigitte Boccone-Pagès quoted Napoleon, who is reported to have said: “I fear three newspapers more than 100,000 bayonets.”

“If we do not always agree with your conclusions we praise your application to report. While the world press is in crisis, we are pleased that Monaco has, in such a small territory, so many media. This raises, we are aware, the question of your subsistence when economic times are difficult for all media. Having a well-resourced press means investing in transparency, responsibility and, ultimately, in democracy.

“Before concluding, I would therefore like to reaffirm the vital importance of an independent and well-financed Monegasque press. Investing in your work means investing in education, knowledge and responsibility. We won’t stop valuing your professionalism and ensuring that you have the resources necessary to continue to accomplish your missions.

“On a personal level, I send you my warm wishes for health and happiness. and success.”

PHOTO: Mrs Brigitte Boccone-Pagès, President of the National Council, flanked by members of the Council Jack Brodie