*Oppose beat associations
AWKAâ€”The Nigerian Guild of Editors (NGE), has expressed worry over the harsh business environment for journalism practice in the country, leading to staffÂ rationalization in many media organisations, and urged the Federal Government to, as a matter of national emergency, take proactive steps to bolster the nationâ€™s economy.
NGE in a communique jointly signed by its President, Gbenga Adefaye and John Ndukauba, General Secretary, after its Standing Committee meeting in Awka, Anambra state, said â€œwe support the Newspapers Proprietors Association of Nigeria (NPAN) in setting up of an ombudsman in order to promote responsible journalismâ€.
According to the communique, â€œthe Guild noted with dismay the harsh business environment for journalism practice in the country, leading to staff rationalization in many media organisations, and urged the Federal Government to, as a matter of national emergency, take proactive steps to bolster the nationâ€™s economy.â€
Further it said, â€œreaffirming its support and encouragement of professionalism through specialization, the NGE reiterated its opposition to Beat Associations which often constitute themselves into miniature newsrooms and â€œcult likeâ€, deciding what news items and sources would be given attention, thereby denying the profession of its all-embracing role as an open market place of ideas. It enjoined media organizations to discourage its staffers from joining such associationsâ€.
The Guild noted, â€œwith satisfaction, the transparent conduct of the last general election of the Nigerian Union of Journalists (NUJ), and expressed the hope that the new leadership of the NUJ will work with other stakeholders to bring respectability and professionalism to journalism practiceâ€.
It lamented the reluctance ofÂ its membersÂ to avail themselves of the opportunity offered by its website, nigerianguildofeditors.com to stimulate discourse and urged all Editors to hook up to the site.