Journalists task on peace and developmental reportage

Journalists task on peace and developmental reportage

By Alex Uangbaoje

The Director Department of State Security (DSS) Kaduna state Command Mr. Abayomi Zamba has said Nigerian Journalists has enormous task of ensuring that the election is conducted in an atmosphere devoid of violence by reporting matters that will unite the people rather than focusing on issues that will plunge the country into violence.
He stated this during his remark at a one day seminar organized for Journalists by Kaduna state council of Nigerian Union of Journalists in collaboration with the Department of State Security.
The Seminar with the theme ‘2015 Election: The Role of Media in peace and Development Journalism, Mr. Zamba said journalists as the watchdog of the society have a great role to play in the success or otherwise of the 2015 election.
According to the DSS Director, Journalists should learn from the past mistake where reportage has thrown nations into conflict, confusion and violence.
“The media  has a very critical role to play in the coming days of electioneering in Nigeria. The citizenry of this country and international players abroad are going to rely on the media to give accurate account of happenings before, during and after the forthcoming elections. Unfortunately, there is a whole lot of misinformation and hype on sundry issues in Nigeria.
“We cannot forget the Rwandan genocide was triggered up radio station reportage, the Vietnam age-long war was as a result of media reportage and in Nigeria, and most election violence from 1960 to date has links to media reports.
“Of recent the 2011 post-election violence was triggered by the way some media reported the outcome, if they were more diplomatic and careful in their report, may be the crisis might have be averted,” he said.
Mr. Abayomi Zamba also advised Nigerians, particularly youths not to avail themselves to be used mischief makers to foment trouble, before, during and after the 2015 election.
“From 2011 experience, the man that will react to your negative reports is not the elites, but that man whose life is anchored on illicit drugs, immediately they told him that there is bad report about his preferred candidate, the next thing for him is to jump into the streets to attack presume opponent without taking time to find out the genuineness or otherwise of the reports.
“So you as a media practitioner, you will do this country a good favour, if you did not mis-inform your readers rather educate and enlighten on the need for peaceful and non-violence election come 2015. From investigation many Nigerians will as much as possible try to avoid the experience of 2011 and you as journalists are the ones to help in averting future crisis.”
In his on remark, the Chairman, Kaduna State Council of the Nigeria Union of Journalists, Comrade Yusuf Idris said the seminar is an eye opener for journalists and a good partnership with the DSS in ensuring a free and fair election come February.

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