From: Noah Ebije, Kaduna
Against the backdrop of recent alleged move by some politicians to invite the military to truncate democracy, the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), on Wednesday, said it would use every means available to it, to resist any attempt to truncate democracy in Nigeria, saying democracy has come to stay in the country.
National President of NUJ, Comrade Abdulwaheed Odusile, stated this at the NUJ national colloquium on elections, corruption and roadmap to 2019 organised by the Kaduna State council in collaboration with a nongovernmental organisation, Pax-Community Partnership Projects (PCPP).
Comrade Odusile who stated this as part of his contribution to the theme of the colloquium,”2015 polls: Reminiscence, Lessons, Challenges and Projections” said the colloquium is coming at the right time, x-raying the 2015 elections to serve as a guide to 2019 elections.
He called on relevant authorities to thoroughly investigate those behind such plans to truncate democracy and punish those that may be found guilty to serve as deterrent to others that may contemplate such in the future.
“The NUJ will resist any attempt to change the present democratic government, we will not allow any attempt to truncate democracy in Nigeria because democracy has come to stay in Nigeria” he reiterated.
Comrade Odusile who described NUJ Kaduna council as the heartbeat of journalism in Nigeria, tasked Journalists on the need to be guided in their reportage and avoid reports capable of creating crisis in the polity of the nation.
The President commended the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) for announcing the 2019 general election dates, which he said will help political parties to prepare ahead of time.
He however called on the electoral body to organize a retreat regarding the activities and monitoring of political parties, suggesting that the media should also be part of such retreat as an arm of government expected to hold the government accountable and monitor it’s activities.
“The government need to create an enabling environment for the media to carry out its constitutional responsibilities, and on this note, the NUJ condemn in totality the recent demolition of a media outfit in Nasarawa State”.
Earlier in his welcome address, the Kaduna State council Chairman, Comrade Adamu Yusuf also stressed the need to build on the gains of 2015 general elections and sustain the “one-man-one vote” legacy and further ensure the effectiveness of the card reader system to reduce to the barest minimum all acts of election rigging and manipulations.