The Federal Government has called on media organizations to always shun sensational reporting and eschew fake news.
The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed made the call 2021 Annual Roundtable On Cultural Orientation organized by the National Institute for Cultural Orientation, NICO, in Ilorin, Kwara State.
Alhaji Lai Mohammed who was represented by the Director of National Orientation Agency, NOA, in Kwara State, Mr Olusegun Adeyemi said the present administration would continue to provide an enabling environment for a for a robust media practice in the country.
According to him, the Federal Government has no plans to muzzle the media but appreciates the media as a strategic partner in its determination to foster the socio-economic and political development of the country
He said the position of the present administration on the regulation of the social media was in furtherance of national interest and in line with global best practices.
“The phenomenon of fake news and hate speeches which has dominated the social media space is detrimental to the nation’s peace, security and national cohesion and no responsible government will allow enemies of Nigeria use social media as a tool to destabilize our nation” Alhaji Lai Mohammed added
Speaking on the theme of ARTCO 2021;”Culture, Media and National Cohesion in Nigeria”, the Executive Secretary of NICO, Mr Ado Mohammed Yahuza called on media organizations to always promote cultural values, national unity and cohesion.
Mr Ado Yahuza said the present challenges confronting the country could be surmounted through a culture rebirth programme with the media playing a leading role.
“The replacement of our cherished cultural values of honesty, hard work, good neighbourliness, respect for elders, respect for constituted authority with negative tendency such as get “get-rich-quick syndrome”, ethni and religious bias have been the bane of our national cohesion and development efforts” the Executive Secretary of NICO added
In a remark, the Governor of Kwara State, Mallam Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq commended NICO for the roundtable programme for the media.
The Governor who was represented by the State’s Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Communications, Hajiya Mopelola Abdulrahman called for more programmes that would promote the country’s cultural sector for national development.
In their separate remarks, the Chairman of the occasion, Otunba of Oraland, Kwara State, Doctor Ade Afolabi and Royal Father of the Day, Olusin of Isanju Isin, Oba Oloyede Solomon called for more budgetary allocation to NICO to further achieve its mandate of harnessing culture for national development.
The ARTCO 2021 which was attended by selected journalists across the country, stakeholders in the culture sector, Heads of Government Agencies among others featured paper presentation, cultural performance, drama among others.