It’s interesting to find that media institutions appear salutary of those in Government more than hold a position of dispassionate role-play, at least in my recent estimation. While it is important to be patriots in a skewed globalised order, of importance is to stand firm and fight where one’s oxen are repeatedly gored and death results, to State connotatively.
It is unargauble, that the Nigeria Police as well as the DSS both top the chart of questionable arrests and detention, but could there be an equal measure of force and strength from the Nigerian Union of Journalists and the Nigerian Press Council. There must be proactive postures from these regulatory bodies or the profession would suffer a higher level of humiliation.
Agba Jalingo comes to mind as a present reference in the scheme of dictatorial realities in a democracy. The journalist had in July of this year asked salient questions with respect to some hundreds of millions for a Micro-finance bank in Cross Rivers State, but since August, he’s been hauled into jail like a common criminal, while these bodies go about their businesses as though all were normal.
Does anyone remember Abiri Jones, Kofi Bartels, Mary Ekere, Ja’far Ja’far, Saifullah Mika’ilu among many others? When these people suffered in the hands of the Nigerian Government, both at Federal and State levels, the NUJ and NPC seemed to have no voice.
Its high time these agencies understood that they must fill a gap beyond membership fees, visits to State and Federal offices or get appointments with administrations who see them as regular fillers for image laundering and public temperament modulation.
This is a clarion call to these media institutions to wake up to contemporary responsibilities. They can better put their legal departments to use, refreshing the minds of some leaders upon whose ‘stipends’ they subsist, that violating a constitutional right such as press freedom would not be tolerated.
Adeniyi kunnu is a journalist and writes from Lagos State, Nigeria.
NOTE: Opinions expressed in this article are strictly attributable to the author, Adeniyi kunnu and do not represent the opinion of CrossRiverWatch or any other organization the author works for/with.
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