GHAZNI CITY (Pajhwok): Women reporters in southern Ghazni province say non-payment of salaries and discriminatory behavior are among other problems they have been struggling with.

Ghazni is an insecure province where the Taliban often launch group attacks which result in heavy financial and property losses to different sectors, including the media.

In the past, 13 women would work in media in Ghazni but most of them have quit their jobs.

Tabasum, a journalist, said she has been working in a media outlet over the past few months, but she is yet to offer a salary.

Some restrictions from family side added to her problems, according to Tabasum, whose relatives did not want her to work in the media or talk to strangers.

“My relatives daily tell my mother not to allow me to work in the media because they say strangers hear my voice and my mother feel ashamed as well,” she said.

Muzda Noori, who in the past worked with National Radio, said behavior towards women workers in some media outlets was not good.  “Compared to men journalists, females get low salaries,” she said.

She said the Journalists Association in Kabul was yet to reach out to them for support and cooperation.

Khadeja Ashrafi, head of the Women Journalists Committee in Ghazni, said female journalists in the province were faced with multiple issues due to which they were unable to discharge their duty properly.

She said traditional problems in Ghazni still existed due to which relatives did not allow their female family members to work in media. She asked the authorities concerned to reach out to women journalists in Ghazni and resolve their problems.

Jameel Waqar, head of the Journalists Protection Committee in Ghazni, said they often strived to help women journalists address their issues besides their men colleagues.

“The fact is that some women journalists perform duty despite the existing level of insecurity, it is a big achievement for women and media,” he believed.

He said talks with all authorities concerned and institutions of journalists had been launched and advised them to address problems being faced by women journalists.

Rahmatullah Marjankhel, head of a private Radio Station, said after the Taliban attack on Ghazni City, media outlets plunged into huge financial problems.

He said the media outlets incurred some losses during the attack and some after the attack as businessmen stopped their businesses and there were no commercials.

“In the past, if there was no external revenue, local commercial ads were a source of income but now media outlets are deprived of local commercials as well,” he said.

Bashir Mohammadi, director of Ghazni Information and Cultural Affairs Department, acknowledged the problems being faced by women journalists and added the problems increased in recent past.

Work load, not paying salaries, not giving them formal positions and discriminatory behavior were some of the issues women journalist were facing.

Governor’s spokesman Mohammad Arif Noori said they fully supported women journalists and would provide them every possible help.

He said after the Taliban attack, some local media outlets left Ghazni after suffering financial losses.

Besides women journalists, men journalists also face multiple problems in Ghazni and receive no attention from journalist associations in Kabul.

Farida Nekzad, head of the Women Journalists Association in Kabul, also expressed concern over the deteriorated situation of women journalists in Ghazni.

She said investigation into problems faced by women journalists in Ghazni had been launched and the individuals concerned would be advised to improve conditions for female journalists.

She said their representative tasked to assessing the situation was threatened by some people and this problem had been shared with the government and the joint media committee.