- IPC condemns shooting of journalists at APC Lagos Rally
BY EMMANUEL ONWUSORO in Ado-Ekiti
The chairman of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Ekiti State Council, Comrade Rotimi Ojomoyela has said that the practice of responsible journalism is in the national interest.
Comrade Ojomoyela who said this at a forum in Ado-Ekiti, advised his colleagues to toe the line of what he described as responsible journalism, which will go a long way in promoting societal and democratic ideals.
Speaking from the prism of developments at the offices of “The Daily Trust Newspapers “, he opined that it is not out of place to approach appropriate quarters to get accurate position of events rather than engaging in ways capable of undermining national security.
The NUJ helmsman urged members to be cautious in the pursuit of sensitive issues and be watchful when moving to some dangerous spots.
In another development, the International Press Centre (IPC), Lagos-Nigeria has expressed concerned about the reported gun-attack on journalists who were covering the Lagos State rally of the All Progressives Congress (APC) on Tuesday, January 8, 2019.
According to news reports, among those that were affected by the unwelcome activities of gun wielding elements were the group political editor of The Nation Newspaper, Emmanuel Oladesu, New Telegraph correspondent, Temitope Ogunbanke and Ibile Television cameraman, Abiodun Yusuf.
The News Editor of The Nation confirmed the incident to IPC stating that Mr. Oladesu was hit by a stray bullet and was receiving treatment in a hospital although in stable condition.
IPC hereby reminds all political parties that the Nigerian Media Code of Election Coverage obligates them to ensure the safety of journalists covering their activities including campaigns.
IPC therefore called on the Lagos APC to urgently take appropriate steps to apprehend the alleged perpetrators of the bizarre attack with a view to handing them over to the law enforcement agencies for immediate prosecution, also as provided by the Code of Election Coverage.
IPC called on all journalists covering the current campaigns to keep themselves abreast of all safety measure. They should learn to stay away from political activities where rival gangs engage in show of force especially through display of weapons.
Journalists covering the elections should also bear in mind that they constitute dangerous assignments requiring them to take insurance cover especially from their employees.
IPC appeals to the security agents on electoral duty, especially the Police, to consider the protection of journalists as part of their responsibility as envisaged by and indeed provided for by the Nigerian Media Code of Election Coverage.