By Levinus Nwabughiogu
ABUJA-Nigeria on Saturday won the hosting right of 2018 World Congress of the International Press Institute, IPI.
The IPI is a global organisation dedicated to the promotion and protection of press freedom and the improvement of journalism practices. Founded in October 1950, the IPI has members in over 120 countries.
A statement by the Senior Special Assistant to President Muhammadu Buhari on Media and Publicity, Mallam Garba Shehu stated that the development followed a successful bid made by the Nigerian Chapter of the IPI led by its Chairman, Kabiru Yusuf, the publisher of the Daily Trust newspapers and Malam Isma’ila Isa, a long standing member of the world Executive Committee of the IPI in Germany.
Shehu in the statement stated that Nigerian team showcased the rich cultural heritage and democratic advancement of Nigeria in a video presentation to win the conviction of the stakeholders.
He added that the bid was unanimously approved by both the Executive Board of the IPI and the General Meeting which ended in Hamburg.
“In making a strong case for Nigerian hosting of the world congress, the Nigerian team showed a six-minutes video showcasing the rich social and cultural heritage of the country and its outstanding values of media freedom, rich diversity and free flow of news.
“In a video message, a former Governor of Lagos State, Alhaji Lateef Jakande, himself a one-time chairman of the global media body and Alhaji Lai Mohammed the Minister of Information, Culture and Tourism both called for support for Nigeria’s bid and invited editors, journalists and media executives around the world to come to Nigeria to witness an African country’s dedication to quality and independent journalism and the change that is happening within through a democratic process”, Shehu stated.
In a short response to the decision, the Chapter Chairman, Kabiru Yusuf said Nigeria was happy with the hosting right unanimously given.
“It will help to change a lot of wrong perceptions about our country. We won’t take this lightly because it means a lot for Nigeria”, he said