The Director Public Relations and information Nigeria Air force (NAF), Air Commodore Edward Gabkwet counsel journalists to desist from tribal journalism which is a seeming recipe for societal fragmentation and disintegration .
He made the appeal during a courtesy visit to the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) National Secretariat on Tuesday 22 June 2021 where he was received by The President of NUJ Chief Chris Isiguzo Ikechukwu, saying journalists should maintain the ethics of the profession.
According to the NAF spokesman the country is passing through a phase in her life that journalists and the military must collaborate in ensuring the security of the country adding that a situation where some journalist are’’ representing a particular part, or a particular group, or a particular section…it can be very disheartening seriously’’
Continuing he said when media men misinform, so many people who do not have any way to verify the information, take such things from the media hook and sinker and that is not good for any society.
Gabkwet said journalists and the military are working for the sole purpose of improving the lives of the citizenry and so there is need for both to form a synergy in other to defeat the current insurgency in Nigeria.
While pledging to run an open door policy, he said public relations is not about telling lies but the truth at all time and so journalists are free to cross check any information with him at any time as he is obliged to provide clarifications to them.
He said the military especially the NAF which he speaks for is interfacing with critical stakeholders like, NUJ, NIPR and other key stakeholders as relates to image building and keeping Nigerians inform of the military with a view to build good civil- military relationship.
Speaking on the current security situation, he said a lot is being done in the six different geo-political zones to make the country safe for all law abiding citizens to engage in their legitimate activities.
Responding the President of NUJ, Chris Isiguzo commended the Airforce Spokesman for taking the bold step to meeting the key stakeholders and not waiting in his office for them to come to him, saying both the media and security officers are working for the same purpose but doing so from different angles.
He said ‘ these are trying times for Nigeria but we will surely overcome ‘’adding that all strategic partners must come together to work towards the purpose of building a virile environment for peaceful coexistence and for all to engage in their legitimate socio-political and economic activities.
Isiguzo said that all strategic partners must appreciate and recognise each others’ role because if we undermine what a partner does, it will not augur well for the partnership, adding that it should not be the issue of ‘’we versus them’’
On the issue of insurgency he said nobody in the country is immune, be it journalists, security officers, members of the public and so we must all put our differences behind and forge a common front, and he called on those responsible for providing information in the security agencies to promptly respond to enquiries from the media.