#2019Polls: UNDP, Plateau State Government Caution Media Against Inciting Violence, Hate Speech
The United Nations Development Programme,UNDP and Plateau state government have cautioned media practitioners and journalists against inciteful election reportage.
At a two day UNDP capacity building workshop for media group on conflict sensitive reportage ahead of 2019 General Election in Jos,Plateau state
UNDP Nigeria Acting Resident Representative, Betty Wabunoha urged media professionals to ensure that their reports do not incite violence during the forthcoming elections.
Betty Wabunoha,who was represented by the UNDP Programme Officer ,Mr Matthew Alao observed that the media play vital role by fostering peace, there are election related disputes and enable citizens make informed choices .
“It does not only have an essential watchdog function that increases the transparency and accountability of the process, it also, if responsibly and appropriately used, helps strengthen the democratic process and contribute to a more credible and inclusive election,” she said.
In a message, the Plateau State Governor Simon Lalong urged media professionals to help avoid election violence through accurate and factual reportage.
The governor who was represented by the Director General Research and Documentation, Prof. John Wade, observed that media role was key to success of election of any country.
“Conflict sensitive reportage for media organisations and journalists is not only apt but timely considering the fact that we are in the season and threshold of electioneering campaigns
“And, there is an urgent need for politicians to conduct themselves in line with certain values that will make them become better leaders in the overall interest of the country.
“Covering an election requires greater analytical depth and skills to report on it without engendering violence or overlooking peace building opportunities,” he said.
According to him, “Elections are often prone to violence and so in reporting elections, the media and journalists are expected to present their report in such a way as not to fan the fires of conflict,”