‘Families and dependants of some journalists who sacrificed their lives in the line of duty are facing serious hardship now’
A prominent Gospel artiste and founder of Fresh FM Radio Station, Yinka Ayefele, has urged journalists not to sacrifice their lives for the ambition of any politician on the discharge of their duty.
Ayefele gave the advice during the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) B Zone annual public lecture and awards held at the NUJ, Oyo State council, Ibadan.
He said the urge and push to get headline stories during the coverage of campaigns should not be achieved at the detriment of their lives.
Ayefele said the families and dependants of some journalists who sacrificed their lives in the line of duty were facing serious hardship now, while urging the living to learn from this.
Awardees at the event include the Ogun State Governor, Mr Dapo Abiodun, who was represented by his Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr Waheed Odusile; the Chief Press Secretary to Governor Gboyega Oyetola of Osun, Mr Ismail Omipidan; the Olu of Lisa kingdom, Oba Oladele Odugbemi; founder of Fresh FM Radio, Yinka Ayefele; Commander of Amotekun in Ondo State, Mr Adetunji Adeleye, among others.
Ayefele said, “Journalists should avoid sacrificing their precious lives for anybody in the course of performing their roles as media practitioners. Some of your colleagues, who had died in active duty, how are their families faring? You have to ask this question.
“Journalists should also fight for their lives. We make politicians who they are and what they attain through our reports. Don’t allow yourselves to be used for the promotion of people and interest and at the same time exposing your lives to fatal danger.”
The Deputy Vice Chancellor, Administration, Federal University, Oye Ekiti, Prof. Shola Omotola, in a lecture he delivered, said journalists should be able to track campaign promises of political parties in order to inform the opinions of the electorate.
He charged them to explore some reasonable latitude of freedom provided by the Freedom of Information Bill to play critical roles required of them in the conduct of credible polls in 2023.
Omotola, who challenged the nation’s leadership to desist from giving excuses for their failures, averred: “It is not only Nigeria that is post-colonial. There are other African countries that were colonised decades back, but they have shed vestiges of colonialism and they have moved on, with progressive strides.”