NAWOJ organises summit to discuss media relevance in tackling insecurity

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NAWOJ organises summit to discuss media relevance in tackling insecurity

In order to tackle insecurity bedevilling the Nation, The Nigeria Association of Women Journalists (NAWOJ) has organised a National Security Summit to brainstorm with journalists and relevant stakeholders on the role of media in curbing security challenges.

The Summit which was held in Lafia Nasarawa State between 3 to 5 of November has the theme” National Interest Amidst Insecurity- The Role of the Media”.

Stakeholders attending the event regretted how banditry, kidnapping and insurgency have defeated the national agenda of agricultural transformation, they also lamented that insecurity has driven most farmers out of their farms for lack of safety and protection.

The stakeholders acknowledged the theme of the summit, said it is apt considering the fact that professionalism on the part of journalists cum meaningful relationships between the media and security agencies would provide a solution to the menace.

They particularly decried the negative impact of screaming and sensational headlines, describing such as unprofessional, as well as highlighting the significance of Journalism as a weapon in eradicating unpalatable development in human society.

However, they declared that for the media to pose immense benefits in the society, Journalists must be patriotic and nationalistic, they should avoid giving undue publicity to unpatriotic humans and activities, not meant for the well being of the Nation.

The stakeholders urged the media to use the profession in building peace where all Nigerians would live in safety and tranquillity.

The National President of NAWOJ Comrade Ladi Bala earlier in her welcome address disclosed that the event was the first of its kind for the association, and appreciate the Nasarawa State Governor, Abdullahi Sule for the support in hosting the event.

“Nigeria is besieged by insecurity. The diversification of our economy to agriculture is threatened as farmers are no longer secured as before in their farms. Many schools are being closed down, the economy of the nation is shrinking, people no longer have confidence in the government, consequently, media has crucial roles, it’s on this note that NAWOJ deems it fit to call for a security summit.

She added ”NAWOJ is determined to join forces in proferring solution to insecurity in the country, the bloodshed must be curtailed. There must be deliberate and conscious efforts to fight this menace, the media must be patriotic in their reportage. Media and security agencies must partner efficiently to conquer insecurity”

The stakeholders also called on government and private organisations to provide meaningful employment opportunities for the youths.

Former NAWOJ president Mrs Ify Omowole while speaking declared that the usage of screaming headlines by journalists is unprofessional and can escalate insecurity in the country.

The Nasarawa State Governor Engineer Abdullahi Sule who was represented by the Secretary to the State Government, Alhaji Aliyyu Babandoma said ”Nasarawa state had its own experience of security challenges which are herders/farmers crisis, the Benue/Nasarawa community crisis, Darussalam Islamic sect crisis among others”

Governor Sule added that the state has peace-loving people, stressing that security is everybody’s business.

”As a government, we are committed to industrializing our state and growing the GDP, making it safe and secure for people to live here, most importantly everyone must keep politics in abeyance in order to end insecurity.

“In my first assignment on the assumption of office, I visited my colleagues in Benue to see how we can work together peacefully in our border communities.

”The media helps in bringing democracy to Nigeria, they should help to sustain it through reportage that would bring unity in the country. The pen is a magic which can be used to uphold the security of the country”

In his own speech, Bornu State Governor, Prof. Babagana Umara Zulum who was the guest speaker represented by the State Commissioner for Women Affairs Hajiya Zuweira Gambo said Journalists in the course of conflict reportage have displayed courage.

”In Maiduguri a number of them have faced challenges in reporting, staying away from their homes. However, Some social media content is not helping the situation, security and armed forces need media to inform the public about their roles. The media must play the role of watchdog in tackling insecurity, professional journalists must distinguish themselves at all times especially when choosing their headlines.

”Also, the tendency of poor remuneration cannot produce good journalists, because responsible Journalism will make our society safer, while journalists take training seriously”.

Other stakeholders at the event were representatives of security agencies, the National President of the Nigeria Union of Journalists, (NUJ) Comrade Chris Iziguzor, President Nigeria Guild of Editors, Mallam Mustapha Isa.

The summit was attended by all national and state executives of NAWOJ across the country.

At the technical session, journalists had an interface with the stakeholders on security and other related issues and the way forward.

NAWOJ organises summit to discuss media relevance in tackling insecurity

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