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Journalists Must Work With Utmost Responsibility-Tinubu

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Journalists were on Wednesday advised to live up to their status as members of the Fourth Estate of the Realm.

The advice was contained in a congratulatory message by All Progressives Congress (APC) leader Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu to the new leadership of the Nigeria Guild of Editors (NGE).

He urged the NGE executives to ensure their members discharge their duties with a sense of responsibility.

The former Lagos State governor said: “The committee must ensure journalists perform with utmost maturity and responsibility for which they are aptly called the Fourth Estate of the Realm.

“It’s only by so doing will they publish true and objective news and issue meaningful commentary while beating back the menaces of fake news, hate speech and biased reporting.

“Let us do more to improve the critical organisations and institutions of our country, particularly at this time.

“Once again, I congratulate the new officers of the NGE. I wish them a most successful tenure.”

Tinubu reminded the NGE leaders of the need not only to work for their union and members but also for the country.

According to him, the executive committee has a tremendous responsibility as the pacesetters for editors and, by extension, guardians of both journalistic freedom and quality to ensure the editors perform their work according to the best standards of the profession.

“Editors and the press, in general, are essential to the wellbeing of a democratic and open society, and thus, must do well for democracy to be sustained and grow”, he said.

In the message issued in Lagos by his Media Office, Tinubu said: “I earnestly congratulate the newly-elected Executive Committee of the Nigeria Guild of Editors at their recent convention in Kano.

“I particularly commend the President of the Guild, Mustapha Isah, who was re-elected as president at the convention. His re-election is a testament to and affirmation of the trust and confidence reposed in his leadership by his colleagues.

“I charge Isah and his executive committee to do more for the union and the country in this new tenure.

“As the pacesetting body for all editors, and, by extension, as guardians of journalistic freedom and quality, this executive committee must ensure that editors and journalists live and work by the creed of their profession.

At their biennial convention held at Tahir Guest Palace Hotel, Kano, the editors re-elected Mallam Mustapha Isah as president.

In the new executives are Mallam Ali M. Ali, Deputy President (North); Editor of Thisday, Mr Bolaji Adebiyi, Vice President (West); Mr Samuel Egbala, Vice President (East), and Habibi Nuhu, Vice President (North) among others.

Former Vice President Atiku Abubakar advised the NGE leaders to be a strong voice for good governance and the rule of law.

He urged them to demonstrate courage by speaking out on behalf of ordinary Nigerians, who have no voice in the face of excruciating challenges of existence.

Atiku said: “The media is the watchdog of society and therefore they have a great responsibility for holding leaders accountable in order to promote good governance and the rule of law.”

Advising the new leaders of the Guild to show courage in the demonstration of their responsibilities as watchdogs of society, the one-time vice president said: “The press is indispensable to a free, democratic society.

So, you are the voice of the people. Your role is not that of cheerleaders, but of holding government accountable for the good of democracy.”

He said the media should emphasise things that unite the people rather than those that divide them, adding that they should respect and reflect all shades of opinions in the country instead of suppressing views.

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