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Experts task media practitioners on professionalism

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By Osakwe Ifunanya

A team of experts in various fields have called on young media practitioners to be professional and provide truthful information to the public.

They spoke last week during a virtual lecture entitled: “Public accountability and good governance: The role of  young media practitioners”, organised to honour the late Ngozi Nwozor-Agbo, pioneer Editor of  Campus Life.

The Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Lagos State, Mr. Gbenga Omotoso, said young media practitioners should ensure they provided factual information to the public. The erstwhile editor of The Nation also urged them to  be committed to the profession.

“Young media practitioners must write facts and not hearsay. They must be able to commit themselves fully in the profession.

“The social media seems to have taken over but one cannot find depth in such stories. So a young man or woman who wants to be a journalist must be attentive and listen to facts,” he said.

A Media Career Development Specialist, Mr. Lekan Otufodunrin, charged young practitioners to appreciate the media space and take it seriously.

He said most young practitioners were not properly grounded in the affairs of the country and as such did not know what the constitution says about political office holders and their duties to the country.


“Without knowing what the constitution says how can a young journalist know when the political office holders are not being accountable?

“Public accountability is about being answerable. We need to understand that people in government owe us for the role they are playing. They have made all kinds of promises and we need to track these promises and only then will we be able to ask the right questions,” he said.

Jumoke Awe, a brand strategist, advised young media practitioners to stand for truth at all times.

“The media  can be seen as the fourth arm of the government and so their office must be seen as serious. In a situation where the media fails to stand for truth, the whole system could become corrupt.

“This is why young media practitioners must make the effort to report the truth. It is imperative they redirect themselves as ministers of the press,” she said.

Also, Dotun Eyinada, a public policy and energy access expert, stressed the importance of the media.

“We are at  crossroads of our life and the role of the media cannot be overemphasised. Young media practitioners should be idealistic and truthful. If one looks around the country, there is insurgency.


“We have groups clamouring for one thing or the other and many crises all around the country. Then, the fact that Nigeria has a very youthful population makes the theme of public accountability very important.

“However,  public accountability should not be narrowed down to only political groups but also to social and religious groups.  The mentality that once someone is wealthy he or she cannot be questioned should be discard ed,” he said.

Meanwhile, the Ngozi Nwozor-Agbo Initiative (NNAI) was unveiled during the lecture.

According to Hannah Ajakaiye ,who moderated the lecture, the NNAI is aimed at preserving the  ideas and legacies of the deceased and to  build capacity among  youths in media and provide platforms to influence policies.

She added that the initiative was created by former undergraduates who benefited from  the deceased’s unique leadership to ensure vision lives on.



Source: The Nation Online

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