By Bose Adelaja
As Nigeria prepares towards the 2019 general elections, Lagos State Government has admonished Community Media Practitioners to be factual in their reportage rather than do otherwise.

File: Photo Journalists discharging their duties. Note this image was extraction from Google

Speaking in Lagos, at a two-day workshop for Community Media Practitioners, the Commissioner for Local Government and Community Affairs Honourable Muslim Folami advised the Practitioners to be upright in the discharge of their duties.

Furthering, he advised that they should tilt to the grassroots rather than go for mediocrity so as not to rubbish their career.

He cautioned that they should not allow monetary gains to derail their sense of reportage as well as their integrity in the profession. He said, ‘’report objectively and don’t be partisan. Be factual and don’t allow monetary gains to kill your integrity/probity. Please, be alive in your work and do it well,’’

The event with theme: ‘’Strategic Communication: A tool for media networking and community relations’’.
was powered by Lagos State Governor Akinwunmi Ambode attracted a total of 160 Journalists drawn from both print and electronic media.

Present at the occasion were top government functionaries and various interest groups like Alhaji Monzor Olowosago, the Patron Association of Community Media Practitioners and Publisher ‘’Oriwu Sun’’ newspaper, Hon. Akeem Omoyele Sulaimon Special Adviser to the Governor on Communities and Communications, Mr. Dayo Akintobi President, Association of Practitioners of Community Media (APCOM) and Professor Alaba Adenuga of Faculty of Education, Olabisi Onabanjo University, Ogun State.

In his keynote address, Sulaimon urged practitioners to join hands in the fight against bearing false information especially on social media.

The Special Adviser decried the negative impact of false information pledged the practitioners to rise against the trend. In his words, “Let us seize the opportunity to ruminate on the negative impact of fake news spread on the social media in our communities as this can lead to chaos, thus, causing disaffection in the country,” he said.

According to him, through community media, the residents experienced inter-cultural dynamics as well as being able to reach out to members of the communities and share relevant information and news items.

He said community media helped in raising awareness of communities to protect and defend the rights of victims within their domain.

In the same vein, the Publisher of Oriwu Sun newspaper, Alhaji Monzur Olowosago, highlighted the relevance of Community Media to the society.

While commending the State government for its effort in the sector, he urged participants to distinguish themselves and to be devoid of quackery.

He revealed that over 80,000 Community Media are currently are operational and said that it must have risen beyond this in the near future.
Olowosago advised practitioners not to allow themselves be used by some self centered individuals especially at this point in time.

In his address titled ‘’Strategies for human relations administrative communications for communal growth and development’’, Professor Adenuga urged practitioners to always clarify and authenticate their reportage.

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