From Maiharaji Altine
Governor Abubakar Atiku Bagudu of Kebbi State has urged Journalists in the country to uphold national unity, just as they should always prioritize national interets.
Bagudu, who is also the Chairman of the APC Governors’ Forum made the call in Birnin Kebbi when he declared opened the inaugural National Executive Council meeting of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ).
It is being hosted by the Kebbi State Government led by Bagudu, who is also the Deputy Chairman, Food Security Council of Nigeria.
The Governor, who was represented by the Secretary to the State Government, Alhaji Babale Umar, said the position of the journalists in the society is critical.
Bagudu further urged the journalists to endevaour to always report objectively and in accordance with the ethics of their profession.
The Governor also urged them to report all the developmental efforts of the three tiers of government towards solving the various problems facing the nation.
Bagudu said: ” We are faced with security, economic and political
challenges, among others which the journalists should help to resolve.
He said: ‘Of more serious concern is the challenge to security an dnational unity. This calls for more concerted efforts by Media practitioners and all stakeholders to address these challenges”.
Bagudu promised to continue to take journalists as active partners with a view to taking Kebbi State to greater heights.
In her remarks, the state Commissioner of Information and Culture, Haijya Rakiya Tanko Ayuba-Haruna said that the meeting had already assumed a dimension of unifying factor.
The Commissioner added : ” It therefore, remains our commitment to continuously uphold to this tradition and cherish it for the fact that it has been championing the cause of our unity in diversity.
” The Press, popularly known as the ‘fourth estate of the realm’ is
saddled with statutory role and responsibility of educating and
enlightening people on all matters and issues including Government policies and programmes.”
She explained that the press is the mirror through which Government policies, actions and or inactions are viewed, measured, monitored and evaluated.
”For this reason among many others, as press and agenda setters, we need to understand properly the concept of ‘Government Media/Press relationship.
”.We need to review it holistically and put the wagon back on track.
One best ways to achieve this is by jettisoning the mentality ‘Cat and Mouse’ race relationship between the duo.”
Hakiya Rakiya Tanko Ayuba Haruna averred: ”We must begin to see government as partners in progress devoid of political coloration or tribe.”
Represented by the Permanent Secretary, Alhaji Hamisu Garba Zuru, the Commissioner lamented that the nation was being faced with several problems, hence, the press family must team up with all the tiers of government towards solving them..
”As members of the prestigious Nigeria Union of Journalists,
individually and collectively at National and State levels, we need to put hands on deck in reporting objectively the developmental objectives of the present administration towards solving the myriad of our State and National problems.
”As newsmen your position in the society is prime, therefore, we must refrain from any act capable of endangering national unity.
” We need to team up together and report objectively which can be achieved through consultation and good will from among all tiers of Government with us as the fourth tier,” she urged.
The commissioner commended Gov. Abubakar Atiku Bgudu for being media friendly and for taking the bold step to digitize Kebbi State owned Radio and Television, hence, enhance their operations.
” He has also continued to assist and provide facilities for private
and Federal Government owned media organizations cited in the state,” she added.
In his remarks, the National President of the union, Mr Chris Isizugo lauded Bagudu for facilitating the Inaugural National Executive Council Meeting of the Union.
He lauded the military operations in the North West Region of the country against the murderous activities of Non State Actors.
The NUJ national president further called for urgent steps be taken to avert a complete breakdown of law and order.
”Experts and researchers allude to what they describe as shifting
geography of violence, an apparent reference to attacks on villages, semi urban centres and communities.
”These attacks have doubled the numbers of Internally Displaced
persons-IDPs all over the region,” Isiguzo’, said .
He urged journalists to be careful not to be tempted into propagating fake news, saying,” proper and adequate checks must be ensured before stories are written and transmitted for public consumption.
Isiguzo called on the Federal Government to assist the most affected states in the North West with more urgent remedies to ameliorate the hunger that will be experienced this year because of the limited access to farmlands by farmers.
The NUJ National President also Stated :”Food security is of vital
importance if the Nation wants to avert a catastrophe.
”We pray to the Almighty that very soon, we shall witness a more peaceful, more prosperous region where farming activities will flourish, children will have access to education.
” Health Institutions will be revamped and destroyed or decayed infrastructure will be restored.”