Play greater mediatory role in Today’s conflict ridden world – Danbatta to Editors

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By Chibuike Nwabuko

Abuja (Sundiata Post) – Executive Vice Chairman of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Prof. Umar Garba Danbatta, has called on Editors and media managers in Nigeria to play a greater mediatory role by entrenching a peace media system and building a culture of peace in today’s conflict-ridden world.

Danbatta made the call on Thursday at the 17th All Editors Conference, 2021, the theme: “Media in the Times of Crises: Rising Conflicts, Achieving Consensus” held at the NAF Centre, Kado Abuja.

According to Danbatta, “A lot of people in times of crisis, look up to the media to provide vital information that will help them in making informed decisions that create stability in emotional management, rather than take actions that result in pandemonium.

“Because most newspapers or broadcast media also have online versions, the NCC strongly advocates responsible use of the internet to carry out personal business and other professional activities in the way and manner as to promote unity, peaceful co-existence and cohesion in the society,” the EVC added.

The EVC also reminded that 112 toll free line provided by the Nigerian Communications Commission will help Nigerians from different locations to get emergency information available to government and relevant agencies for a quick response when confronted any disaster.

Earlier in his welcome address, the President of the Nigerian Guild of Editors (NGE), Mr Mustapha Isah curtail the publicity given to the activities of the terrorists and bandits as this helps to embolden them.

He the Editors to instead, use their various media outlets in projecting the achievements of the gallant Nigerian military in the battle against insurgency as this will also boost their moral to more.

Isah who reminded that the media have to be part of the solution and be at the fore front of the war against terrorism said,“I want to put a few questions out: should the media play the occasional successes of insurgents and bandits against that of our military? Shouldn’t the media deliberately give adequate publicity to our dedicated military against the bad guys?“One thing I know is that terrorists and bandits need publicity to sustain their nefarious activities. Deny them those privileged activities and you would have crippled them,”

Similarly, Group Managing Director, Nigerian Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Mallam Mele Kyari, decried the impact of insecurity on the oil and gas sector. Kyari said oil and gas workers are targets of kidnap gangs around the country and so much money has been lost as ransoms to rescue kidnapped workers.

According to him, most of the communities around oil and gas facilities are communities of thieves, noting that they serve as hide outs for people who vandalize oil facilities and those involved in oil bunkering. Kyari further assured of a new NNPC and better performance of the corporation in the coming years, especially the advent of the Petroleum Industry Act (PIS).

“Today, as we all know, Nigeria is in an energy deficit. We import all our petroleum products. In the past several years, every attempt to salvage our refineries have ended up in one misfortune or the other. “There have been so many factors responsible for this. However, I can assure you that things have changed and so many things are about to change. “For the first time in history, NNPC and its subsidiaries are allowed to do things the way they should be done.“I can confirm to you that we will fix those refineries.

The GMD, NNPC who started by responding to the question raised by the Chairman of the event, Mr. Ray Ekpu on why it has been difficult to fix the four refineries over the years, said the major problem is the elites. He stressed that it’s not poor Nigerians that carry out the sea we witness in the waterways.

Sundiata Post recalls that the Editors Conference is an avenue for editors to come together and liaise relevant stakeholders to discuss national issues and proffer solutions.

Others who took part in the events are the Inspector General Of Police IGP Usman Alkali Baba who was represented by CP Frank Mba, DG, DSS represented by Peter Mnochirionyeuzo Afunanya, NIA represented by Emma Azogwu, the President of the Nigerian Union of Journalists, Mr Isinguzo among other dignitaries.

Highlight of the day one of the 17th Editors conference was the unveiling of the book titled: “Uneven Step” by the Presidential spokesman, Garba Shehu along other dignitaries.

The 17th Editors Conference which is scheduled to last three days continues tomorrow.