Home NEWS IPC Harps on fully implementation policies on Journalists rights, safety

IPC Harps on fully implementation policies on Journalists rights, safety

International Press Centre (IPC), a non governmental and independent media resource centre has called on the professional bodies and stakeholders to ensure that the laws providing for the protection of journalists in the country be fully implemented at all levels.

Dr Nura Ibrahim

This was part of the recommendations contained in a communique, signed by Stella Nwofia program manager of the IPC, and issued at the end of a two-day media capacity building workshop for Journalists on safety/security consciousness and mechanisms in Investigative reporting and coverage of conflicts/dangerous assignment, which held on Tuesday July 5 and Wednesday July, 2022, in Kano State.

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Dr. Ruqayyah Aliyu

According to the Communique, in view of rising hostilities against journalists and media professionals in the country, the workshop was organised to equip journalists on prerequisite skills and knowledge on safety and mental wellbeing especially in the build up to the 2023 general elections.

Ibrahim Isah

25 female and male Journalists from online, print and broadcast media who participated at the workshop were taken through lectures on entrenching ethics and professionalism, building safety and security consciousness and giving deserved attention to physical and mental health. The training took place at Chilla Luxury Suites, Kano State, Nigeria.

In the welcome address, Omolola Arogundade, Media Monitoring Officer of IPC, stated that the training was designed as part of steps towards providing appropriate response to relentless assaults on journalists and media institutions by both state and non-state actors, with the perpetrators rarely facing justice.

Nasir Yusuf

The three resource persons who made presentations were drawn from the academia. Dr. Nura Ibrahim , Head, Department of Information and Media Studies in the Faculty of Communication, Bayero University, Kano facilitated the sessions on ‘Data and Digital Security and Related Security Issues in Investigative Reporting and Coverage of Dangerous Assignments’.

While Dr. Ruqayyah Yusuf Aliyu, a lecturer with the department of Information and Media Studies in Bayero University, Kano, took the participants through ‘Investigative Journalism or Reporting: Understanding the Challenges and Possible Dangers’.

Dr. Haruna Yakubu

Dr. Haruna Yakub, a Medical Doctor with Aminu Kano Teaching Hospital in the department of Psychiatry facilitated the sessions dealing with ‘Attacks on Journalists, Mental Health Challenges and the Imperative of Effective Management’.

Kola and Mustapha

The Communique urged Journalists and other media professionals practicing and publishing online to openly declare commitment to the upholding of the ethical and professional standards of journalism as spelt out in codes of ethics/conduct while also taking necessary protection and safety measures.

It also recommended Skill acquisition and capacity development should be prioritised by media establishments as part of the welfare package for journalists.

Aisha Ahmad

The Communique similarly emphasized that Journalists’ well-being and mental health should be given priority by all media professional bodies and stakeholders.

“There should be sustained engagement with security agencies to push concerns relating to abuses against journalists and demand for stiff penalties for violation of the “rights’’ of any journalist.”

Participants

“Other independent bodies and NGOs should make it a duty to join the IPC in the fight for the protection of journalists.”

“There should be conscious efforts to sustain the push for the Journalism Enhancement Bill (JEB).”

Participants

The Communique however urged for Media support groups like IPC should continue to prioritise capacity building on digital safety /security and safety consciousness for journalists and other media professionals.

Buhari and Shamsiyya

The Centre also recommended for a greater collaboration between media professionals bodies and Departments of Mental Health Services of tertiary institutions in every state of the federation to mobilise for sustained interest in advocacies on improved welfare and mental health of journalists.

Abbas Yusha’u

” Media organisations (government and privately owned) should provide continuous mental health educations and self-protection training for their staff.”

Furthermore in the Communique, participants observed that Journalists’ welfare in Nigeria has worsened over the decades without concrete efforts to improve the situation.

Mr. Zahraddeen

They also observed that Journalists have not demonstrated sufficient interest in reporting issues that directly affect their welfare and safety individually and collectively.

“There are huge gaps in the provisions for and enforcement of regulations for the protection of rights of journalists and to guarantee their welfare.”

Nazeer and Abba

“Journalists and professional bodies have not adequately prioritized campaigns for insurance policies to guarantee welfare at the workplace’

They further observed that Journalists are still ignorant of the FOI Act and therefore unable to deploy the provisions of freedom of information (FOI) Act for investigative purposes. Among other recommendations.

Mukthar Yahaya

The participants appreciated the Shehu Musa Yar’adua Foundation, Ford Foundation, Luminate and OSIWA for supporting the workshop through the funding of the project on ‘Contextualizing and Publicizing Real Costs & Mobilising Against Increasing Violation of Media Freedom, Journalists Rights and Freedom of Expression’.

Rabi’u Ali

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