Abia NUJ Celebrates World Press Freedom Da
Abia State Council of the Nigeria Union of Journalists today, 3rd May, 2022, join their Counterparts all over the globe to celebrate this year’s World Press Freedom Day with theme “Journalism Under Digital Siege” at the NUJ Secretariat Umuahia.
Speaking , the Immediate Past Chief of Staff to the Governor Dr. Okezie Ikpeazu, Professor. ACB Agbazuere charged Journalists on the maintainance of their professional ethics as a way of sustaining their integrity.
Professor Agbazuere while commending Journalist in the state on the way they have conduct themselves so far in the state, noted with joy that Journalists have continued to show professionalism in the discharge of their duties and called for its sustainance .
Agbazuere called on government to look into the welfare of Journalists in the world, including Abia state stating that their welfare should be made a fundamental objective to enable them to effectively discharge the task expected of them as watchdog of society.
Also speaking, the Chairman, Abia State Council of the Union, Comrade Victor Ndukwe who made a case for the enhancement of the digital competencies of the professional and the advancement of legislation for the protection of Journalists and their sources, noted that greater fits will be achieved if the fight is also taken from the economic front.
Comrade Ndukwe while stressing the need for a condusive work environment for Journalists, proper training and retraining and the employment of only professionals for the task of a journalist, called on his colleagues on responsive and responsible journalism, to always prioritize professionalism and the good of society as against individual or parochial interest.
Delivering a lecture on the theme of the 2022 World Press Freedom Day celebration which is “Journalism Under Digital siege”, the Guest Lecturer and Head, Department of Mass Communication, Director ICEP/JUPEB Gregory University Uturu, Associate Professor Uwaoma Uche, frowned at the level of internal and external siege on the journalism profession, observed that while there is the dire need for a free press, there is no absolute freedom of the press anywhere and urged the practitioner to continue to strive for self regulation as a means of maintaining and enthronining factual reportage.
Dr Uwaoma Uche advocated the fusing of the responsibilities of the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) the Nigeria Communications Commission (NCC) and the Nigeria Press Council (NPC) to include the regulation of the digital and Internet based media.
The Guest Lecturer while warning against all forms of hate speech especially in the buildup to next year general elections, harped on the need for the media to remain unbiased and continue to hold government and the public to account for the good of society.
According to Associate Professor Uwaoma Uche, Journalist in the state should avoid hate speeches expecially in the forthcoming 2023 General elections in order to prevent the experiences of the past against any violence or total breakdown of law and order in Nigeria particularly Abia State.
He noted that the NUJ still remains the umbrella body for professional Journalists in the country and should be accorded that right by all and be so recognized as far as information dissemination generally is concerned.