By Ali Abare Abubakar with agency reports
The Nigerian Press Council (NPC) said arrangement had been concluded to train 45 journalists drawn from the South-South geo-political zone of the country for the 2015 general elections.
The acting Executive Director of the council, Mr Nnamdi Njemanze, made the disclosure in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) yesterday in Abuja, adding that the training had become imperative for effective elections coverage in the country.
He said that the workshop was also meant to sensitise participants on how best to cover 2015 general elections in the country, as according to him, the workshop is going to be fifth in the series of the workshop to be held in the six geopolitical zones of the country.
He said that the workshop would be organised by the Democratic Governance for Development Project 11 of the UNDP/NPC.
“We are in the season of electioneering and we need to take full advantage to participate in the two major principles of human rights.
“The right to freedom of expression and the right of the people to vote and be voted for,” he said.
He expressed confidence that the media was no doubt pivotal to enduring democracy in the country because it provided an invaluable channel of communication between the contestants and the public.
Njemanze said the media also provided an arena for public debate and information on candidates to enable voters to make an informed decision whenever they were casting their votes.
“The training will enhance the capacity of the media to report the 2015 general elections objectively and beyond.
“The training is to sensitise participants to the challenges of political reporting and to remind them of the place of ethics in the profession,” he said.
He said at the end of the training, the participants would see the reasons why they should always insist on finding out the true nature of events before filing their report, stressing that this would reduce cases of journalists getting into trouble for one reason or the other.
He said the workshop would also avail the participants of the opportunity to appreciate the need for fairness, accuracy and balanced reportage. (NAN)