Journalists across the country have been implored to rise up against the challenge of fake news by upholding strongly the principles and ethics of the journalism profession to ensure unity before, during and after twenty nineteen general elections.
Special Adviser on Media and Publicity to President Muhammadu Buhari, Femi Adesina made the call in Lokoja during an event to mark the closing of the Press Week in Kogi state.
Speaking on the topic, the media and news reporting in an election year, Mr Adesina reiterated that objective reportage, cross checking of facts, as well as strict adherence to codes of election coverage would help traditional media avoid the impact of fake news usually peddled through the social media.The presidential spokesman however cautioned journalists to discharge their duties with some form of responsibility as the media would no doubt have a great impact on the out come of the elections.
According to him, the purveyors of fake news posed a grave danger to the country and perpetrate their acts through the traditional media.
National President, Nigeria Union of Journalists, NUJ, Waheed Odusile in a remark said the Leadership of the Union was working towards checking quackery and urged members of the judiciary and the public to collaborate in checking the menace of fake news dissemination in Nigeria.
Chairman of the occasion and Minister of State for Labour, Professor Stephen Ocheni who was represented at the event underscored the pivotal role journalists play in attaining good governance and urged them to be wary of self serving politicians.
Director General, Kogi state Bureau of Information and Grassroots Sensitization, Alhaji Abdulmalik Abdulkarim said that the state government was repositioning the state printing press as well as revitalizing all state owned media to ensure prompt information dissemination.
Earlier, Chairman, Kogi state Council of NUJ, Alhaji Adeiza Jimoh noted that members of the council had done tremendously in ensuring good governance in spite of socio political challenges in the state.
He explained that a welfare scheme had been put in place to support its members and reminded the state government to redeem its promises to the state council of the NUJ.
There were goodwill messages from the North Central as well as South Eastern Zones of the NUJ.
The week long event also featured fund raising for the upgrade of facilities at the NUJ Press Centre, Lokoja.