World Press Freedom Day: Gov Okowa’s EAC, Oghenesivbe Celebrates Nigerian Journalists.
…Urges Media Practitioners, Social Media Influencers To Abhor Disinformation, Not To Politicize Covid-19 Case management.
Nigerian Journalists and Social Media Influencers have been commended for their inestimable sacrifices, contributions to nation building and result oriented partnership with Delta State Government.
The commendation was made by the Executive Assistant to the Governor of Delta State on Communications, Dr (Barrister) Fred Latimore Oghenesivbe, in his goodwill message to mark the World Press Freedom Day.
He said members of the press in Nigeria, have done well in the discharge of their civic responsibilities and constitutional assignments as watchdogs of society, pointing out that the press is regarded as an integral part of government, which is why the quarterly press briefing by the state governor, Senator Dr Ifeanyi Arthur Okowa, remained sacrosanct since the inception of this administration.
Oghenesivbe, who is a member of the International Communication Association, ICA, called on members of the general public, drivers of public and private sectors to accord Journalists the needed cooperation in news gathering, adding that by virtue of the Freedom of Information Act of 2011, members of the press are entitled to vital information in their quest to inform, educate and entertain readers and mass audiences.
The renowned Communication Strategist and Barrister at Law, frowned at reported cases of incessant harassment, intimidation and assault melted on working Journalists around the world, adding that in Delta State, Journalists and social media Influencers enjoys freedom of the press and are considered as core partners in progress with the government and the governor, Senator Dr Ifeanyi Arthur Okowa.
The EAC to Gov Okowa further stated that Delta NUJ Chairman, Comrade Michael Ikeogwu and his team have demonstrated reasonable high level of professionalism in the face of weak funding for Journalists, especially alleged nonpayment of salaries by some popular private media organisations, some are owing workers over 12 months and above, and still counting.
He urged media moguls, printing, publishing and broadcasting companies to clear backlog of salaries owed Journalists, adding that it is the responsibility of all responsible employers of labour to pay workers as at when due, adding that Delta State Government’s priority was and still the payment of salaries, not minding socioeconomic imbalances and low revenues.
“Nigerian Journalists are some of the best in the world, especially in Delta State, where they are treated nicely and as partners in progress with government. Though, there has been one or two reported cases of minor misunderstandings between some Journalists and few persons, Delta is in good standing and excellent in human rights issues.
“Journalists deserves fat salaries and remunerations, considering the risks involved in core news gathering, especially investigative journalists who are required to go extra miles to unearth deep rooted transactions relating to misappropriation of funds, massive corruption and other unscrupulous activities in both public and private sectors of our nation’s economy, political and leadership spheres.
“More importantly, Journalists must not be owed salaries because of the essential services they render to the society, to our country and to their employers. They deserve the good things of life and no employer of labour should deny them the fruits of their creative and intellectual labour, going forward.
“I wish all members of the press around the world a happy world press freedom day.
“I urge them to avoid disinformation and politicization of Covid-19 case management, due to the complex nature of the virus and the need to allow health professionals to release credible information for use by the mass media,” Oghenesivbe said.