“We Are Partners In Information Business”, Delta Commissioner Tell Journalists

…As Aniagwu Task Media Practitioners On Self Respect
By Kenneth Orusi, The Nigerian Voice, Asaba
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Delta State Commissioner for Information, Mr Patrick Ukah has told journalists in the state that they are partners with the state government in moving the trade forward.

“We can form a strong partnership in moving this our trade forward, which is informing our people very well. It is not a one sided issue, we provide information, you inform our people and when it is not clearly done, you can also tell us where we are not doing well”.

The Information Commissioner stated this Monday when the newly sworn-in executives of the Indigenous Newspapers and Magazines Chapel (INMC), of the Nigerian Union of Journalists (NUJ), Delta State Council paid him a thank you visit and to introduce the new executives to him in his office in Asaba.

He noted that the importance of the INMC cannot be overemphasized as they deal more with the grass root, “and because you deal more with the grass root, the direct or primary beneficiaries of government policies is actually the people in Delta and those of you who are in the INMC are the ones who connect very well with the people”.

“Also as much as we understand that there is need to make the world both nationally and globally to know what we are doing but you are the ones who are here and you can feel the pitch, continue to do your job”.

Meanwhile, the Chief Press Secretary (CPS) to the Delta State Governor, Mr Charles Ehiedu Aniagwu, has frown at the situation where media practitioners after conducting interviews, wait around the person until money comes, describing it as “unbefitting to journalism profession”.

Hear him, “the idea of journalists thinking that the best thing you can do is to interview somebody and surround the person until he gives money, is not befitting. You can make money without having to take that step. And so you need to be able to look at the conduct of your members. That is very important because beyond the material things that you need to bring to bear which to a very large extent your predecessor scored so much in that regard in terms of infrastructure, you need to look at the conduct of your members so that when people go out to interview, the reports becomes the primary purpose. If after such interview, something happens, no big deal but let it not be the real reason”.

He acknowledged the fact that it was not out of place for such stories to be appreciated, “because in Africa, we are our brother’s keepers but let not that transport becomes the primary reason for the interview, let not that transport affect your sense of judgement to the extent that you now begin to report based on that transport rather than base on what the issues are”.

He cautioned the present executives, particularly the practitioners under the umbrella body of INMC to enhance the welfare of its members, “When you do that, you would have been able to leave them better than you met them. I hope and pray that you will progress in that direction”.

They promised that government would continue to interact and interface with journalists to build synergy, “for us to understand what you feel and for you to also understand where we are. When we do that, we think it is going to be much better for both the practitioners and by the grace of God those of us who have the privilege of interfacing between the practitioners and the government.