The Executive Vice Chairman of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Prof. Umar Danbatta has charged the Nigerian media to be fair, objective and balanced in reporting the 2023 elections, which is a few months away.
The NCC Boss, who was at the 18th All-Nigeria Editors Conference, organised by the Nigerian Guild of Editors (NGE) at the Concord Hotels in Owerri, Imo State, believes that credible journalism can influence credible elections.
Danbatta, who was represented by the Director of Public Affairs of the Commission, Reuben Muoka and delivered a goodwill message titled ‘2023: Political Landscape, Credible Elections and the Role of the Editors’, reiterated the importance of the roles of the journalists, before, during and after the 2023 elections.
“Good journalism is critical to sustainable democratic culture as political stability is enhanced by the conduct of successful elections,” he said.
He expressed confidence that the vibrant Nigerian media, credited with its sterling performance from the history of struggle for the country’s political independence, where Nigerian nationalists, who were good journalists made a “brilliant and courageous outing”, will work in the interest of the nation.
“It is my belief that the editors will leave the conference with resolutions setting clear, unambiguous and very robust parameters to guide the role of the media in the forthcoming elections in a fair, objective and balanced manner,” he added.
He argued that beyond and above the traditional routine role of the media in information-sharing, education and entertainment, the media is a social agency constitutionally charged to watch those of us in public office from derailing from the pursuit of the social contract and the social good.
While expressing gratitude to the Nigeria media for trusting the NCC and supporting its efforts to fulfill its mandate right from the beginning of the transition from “state-dominated telecommunication operations to a deregulated, more liberalised market, Danbatta informed the gathering that the Commission is dedicated to the implementation of the Nigerian National Broadband Plan (2020-2025), and the National Digital Economy Policy and Strategy (2020-2030), among other regulatory instruments, with a view to enhancing connectivity and social cohesion in the land.