TONY JOHN, Port Harcourt
A veteran media practitioner, Rex Igiri, has tasked members of the National Assembly to come up with a deliberate and conscious policy to address the weaknesses of the media in Nigeria.
Igiri, who is the General Manager of a Port Harcourt-based radio station, Wave 91.7 FM, said there is no way much can be expected from a sector without a functional government policy to strengthen its operations.
He spoke at the weekend, in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, stressing that Nigeria media needs government’s support to carry out its responsibilities effectively to improve the nation’s economy.
Igiri expressed: “There is no way you can commit any sector of the economy without making a deliberate and conscious policy that addresses issues in that sector.
“So, I am of the opinion that policy makers, lawmakers at the federal level should come up with a deliberate policy that will address weakness of the media, strengthen the activities of the media to ensure that the media is able to carry out its responsibilities in this country the way it should be because the economy is crushing various operations in various areas and the media is not left out”, he stated.
The GM, Wave 91.7 FM, note the supports federal government has rendered to various sectors, particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic, wondering why the media should be ignored in the face of a crushing economy.
He stated: “While the government at all levels had devoted time and resources to ease the pains of other sectors of the society, it appears the media has been left to fend for itself.
“To this end, I believe it will not be out of place for the government to give the media a package to soften the impact of the Coronavirus pandemic.
“So, whatever is being done to strengthen our economy in those other sectors, should also be considered for the media. That is our cry”, he expressed.
The GM of Wave 91.7 FM admonished that it would be devastating on the national economic and governance if the media is shut down as a result of operational charges.
He, however, advised that it would be counter-productive for media organisations to run down their counterparts.