2019 election: Adhere to journalism fundamental principles or quit ― Prof Okunna
As the 2019 general election is approaching, Professor Chinyere Stella Okunna, has called on the media practitioners to either adhere to the fundamental principles of professionalism by avoiding sycophants and pressure when discharging their professional duties or quit as the hope of the masses lies in every information they give.
Professor Okunna gave the advice to journalists during a two-day media workshop on best practices and professional reporting on the electoral process organised by the international press centre (IPC) and sponsored by the European Union Support to Democratic governance in Nigeria (EU-SDGN) in Enugu.
According to Professor Okunna during her presentation on “Ethics and Professionalism,” she advised media practitioners to always ensure they balance their report accurately, always be truthful, objective, in their reportage as she encourages them to abstain from impartiality.
Prof Okunna urged them to always have confidence in themselves, to confirm the legitimate authenticity of every event.
The Professor advocated for a regular payment of practicing journalists in Nigeria, stating that irreparable damage would be inflicted on democracy if the media fails to report elections or the electoral process professionally and in accordance with ethical best practices.
She then called for the reforms, which sanitised the Banking Sector few years ago to be speedily applied to the communication sector in Nigeria so as to mandate all prospective media owners (including governments) to deposit in some kind of trust fund a substantial amount of money to be ‘forcefully’ used to pay salaries of journalists when their employers callously refuse to pay them.