From Noah Ebije, Kaduna
The Kaduna State Command of Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) has said that it respects journalists and their works, saying they can ‘make or mar you’.
Speaking on the topic “Character Management Between Press And Security Agencies”, the Public Relations Officer of the FRSC, Saingnom Mary Ambisa, said the roles of the media in nation-building is very paramount and imperative to peaceful interactions.
Ambisa spoke on Saturday at a one-day workshop on security organised by the Catholic Media Practitioners Association of Nigeria (CAMPAN), Kaduna State chapter.
‘The media has a vital role to play in monitoring security institutions and helping citizens get firsthand information regarding the security sector. Media organisations have put in outstanding contributions and information on activities of security agencies which has led to building acceptance and cooperation from citizens and host communities, especially in volatile environments.
‘One of the major responsibilities of FRSC is to regulate, enforce and coordinate all road traffic and safety management activities through public enlightenment, effective patrol operation and prompt rescue services amongst others. In order to achieve this mandate, FRSC needs a corporate image that will enhance its operations because public perception is an effective tool in the actualisation of its goals. Media representation, therefore, forms a large perception of image building of an agency or organisation hence, the need for synergy and good relationship with media practitioners.
‘Security Agencies on the other hand must embrace Press Men and give them the needed cooperation, support and information whenever the need arises as this will foster better working relationships and a safe environment to function to full capacity.
‘The relationship between Media and Security Institutions is seen as mutually dependent and both must cooperate in order to educate and enlighten the public especially over security concerns. Security Agencies need the media in order to inform the public about its roles and maintain public support. While independent reporting is necessary to hold security agencies accountable, the media are largely dependent on the agencies for information.
‘Access to information may be restricted by some agencies and pressmen would have to rely on official information and statements hence undermining their ability to act in full capacity. Security Agents, like other Public Servants, are not allowed to talk to the press on any matter without the necessary clearance or authority to do so; hence the need for both parties to exercise understanding and patience.
‘The combination of a good character and public image are necessary tools for sustaining the mandate and objectives of any organisation. We must, therefore, recognise and act our roles and responsibilities in the discharge of our duties and do all it takes to improve on the image of the organisation we represent and the Nation at large,’ he said.