By Matthew Denis
Media practitioners have been implored to always showcase the positive side of Nigeria to the rest of the world.
The call was made yesterday, by the Chairman, Publicity Committee of the International Press Institute (IPI), Chief Tonnie Iredia, during a courtesy call at Corporate Headquarters of National Pilot Newspaper, Asa Dam Road, Ilorin. the Kwara State capital.
Speaking, Iredia who was the leader of the delegation noted that National Pilot is the first medium to be visited by the IPI delegation in preparation for its World Congress scheduled to take place in June in Abuja. The former director general of the Nigeria Television Authority described journalism as a profession not for money making but for influence.
He said, “One is happy as a journalist and visiting media house like this is an opportunity to exchange professional ideas on adherence to ethics through dissemination.
“We are only saying it is a great opportunity to be societal mouthpiece therefore we should showcase positive information on Nigeria to the outside world.
“We are opportuned to be in Nigeria a country that sacrifices its scarce resources and manpower for the survival of other countries. As dedicated journalists, we can through our writings portray the good image of the country,” he said.
Speaking further, Iredia charged media houses to consistently recognise outstanding journalists instead of celebrating only people from outside of the profession.
In his remarks, the National President of Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Abdulwaheed Odusile expressed worry over the proliferation of untrained journalists masquerading as bloggers in the society. He added that his administration is determined to sanitise the profession.
Odusile further called for unionism in media houses to discuss vital issues concerning their welfare adding that the NUJ is working on acquiring licenses for both radio and television stations to broadcast news and events in accordance with the ethics of the profession.
He stressed that NUJ now have online database of its members while urging every practising journalists to register in order to get their identity cards and other benefits.
Reacting, the Editor in Chief/Managing Director of National Pilot Newspaper, Alhaji Billy Adedamola express appreciation to the team for making the medium the first point of call on arrival in the state, stressing that his medium will continue to partner IPI to ensure improvement in the working conditions of journalists in the country.
“I can confirm to you that National Pilot remains the most widely read and most popular in the state with ethical touch in the news content,” he said.
He however promised that the newspaper which has undergone so much transformation under his leadership, will not betray the trust of the reading public.