By Rev Fr. Dr. Mike Umoh

Nigerian journalists have been admonished to always stand by the truth and justice in the discharge of their constitutional mandate as the Fourth Estate of the Realm.

The Secretary General of the Catholic Secretariat of Nigeria (CSN), Very Rev Fr Zachariah Samjumi handed the charge during a media parley organized recently to introduce the new National Director, Directorate of Social Communications, CSN, Rev Fr. Dr. Mike Umoh to the Media.

Fr Samjumi told journalists that they have a sacred duty of playing their role efficiently in ensuring that the country relishes in peace, justice and equity.

He declared: “This has always been the position of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Nigeria (CBCN). In the discharge of your duties, truth is of absolute importance, especially in this era of social media, where, in some quarters, communication technology has been manipulated and used to cause confusion and fan embers of disunity and chaos. Presently, our country Nigeria is operating on a dangerous terrain in this perspective”.

Speaking on the EndSARS protest, the CSN Chief Scribe said the CBCN has, in a statement, called for caution, justice and peaceful resolution of the challenges that prompted the youths of the country to take to the streets.

He therefore urged members of the media to be visibly involved in ensuring that the activities of the investigation panels into the hijack of the peaceful demonstration by youths, by hoodlums are transparently carried out. “This is a challenge for the investigative aspect of your profession, and it is our hope that you would do your best to remain truthful and objective”, Fr Samjumi advised.

Similarly, the new Director, Rev Fr Mike Umoh urged regulators of media use and communications in Nigeria to be sincere in the discharge of their duties and avoid policies that will deprive the people of their fundamental right to information and freedom of expression.

The CSN Director stressed that efforts should be channeled towards media education, rather than clamping down on media outfits or media houses in the country. “This is in line with the philosophy of our office which stands for positive and healthy journalism; a journalism for growth and development of the human person and his society”, Fr. Umoh noted.



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