Emmanuel Adeyemi, Lokoja
Worried on the prevailing insecurity in the country, the President of Nigeria Union of journalists (NUJ), Mr Chris Isiguzo has called on the Federal government to overhaul the nation’s security architecture to guarantee the safety of lives and property.
Isiguzo who made the call at the Grand Finale of the 2019 Press Week of the NUJ Kogi council on Thursday in Lokoja said that the country was tending towards anarchy in view of the prevailing security situation.
He said there was hardly any part of the country without one form of security challenges or the other.
The NUJ president, therefore, called on President Muhammadu Buhari to rise to the challenge and overhaul the security architecture to ensure that lives and properties were protected and secured in the country.
He said the fundamental mandate of any government remains the protection and security of lives and properties of its citizenry and therefore urged government at all levels to critically address the security situation across the country.
Isiguzo urged journalists to see the hazards of the profession as the price they have to pay to sustain democracy in the country saying: “It’s something we owe society.”
He cautioned against journalists drawing hasty conclusions in writing their reports, saying they should always ensure that their news were balanced, objective, factual, constructive and impartial, adding that they must be mindful of possible control by politicians.
Alhaji Abdulkarim Abdulmalik, Director General, Kogi Directorate of Information and Grassroots Sensitisation, also speaking, urged journalists to always verify and fact-check their information before publication even if it comes from a very reliable source.
According to him any news that is not cross-checked is bad news adding: “Developmental Journalism is our orientation, we should abide by it. This is not in any way, to say that we should praise-sing the government.”
Mr Wilson Bako, Vice-President, Zone D of the NUJ urged journalists never to be deterred by the harsh conditions under which they practise, saying that they must make duty bearers accountable to the people to ensure good governance.
Bako commended the Kogi State council of the NUJ for casting their votes for Isiguzo and himself earlier in the year at the National Delegates Conference in Abeokuta and assured that the union was in good hands.
Alhaji Momoh-Jimoh Adeiza, Kogi council chairman who spoke earlier appealed to politicians to avoid actions that could threaten the oneness of Kogi State and its people as the November 16 governorship election approaches.
Adeiza assured the state government that the state council of the NUJ was fully ready to report its policies and programmes objectively and where such reportage are considered offensive, the aggrieved should feel free to approach the leadership of the union.
The press week grand finale featured presentation of awards to Kwadeco Pharmacy, Okene, Chief Peter Iduh, a renowned pharmacist, West African Ceramics, Ajaokuta and the administrator of Kogi Local Government, Barr Tanko Musa, with NUJ 2019 award for outstanding performance.