The House of Representatives has underscored the importance of the media in nation building, noting that it remained a potent force in the country’s growth and development.
Spokesperson of the House, Abdulrazaq Namdas, who spoke during the maiden annual dinner and award of excellence organised by the House of Representatives Press Corps in conjunction with Correspondent Chapel of Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) in Abuja, admonished his colleagues to be more receptive to journalists who cover activities of parliament.
He said rather than perceive journalists as enemies, they should be seen as partners in progress adding that a healthy relationship with the media would ensure free flow of information required to the people.
Namdas, who was also honoured as ‘Ambassador of the House’ noted that the media was in a better position to assess activities of lawmakers and commended the House Press Corps for finding time to assess and recognise deserving members.
A former chairman of the House Committee on Media, Eseme Eyiboh in his keynote address admonished the House to raise the bar by taking advantage of the disposition of the press corps to manage its reputation and public perception in view of its vulnerabilities in an era of social and traditional media.
“Time has really changed yesterday, and today, the management or otherwise of information is the difference in the success and failure in leadership,” he said.
Eyiboh, who is now chairman of the Cross River Basin Development Authority (CRBDA), added that constructive engagements, symbiotic relationship management, trainings and informal quarterly experience sharing and collaborations as a panacea for institutional image management.
Earlier on, chairman of the House Press Corps, Umar Mohammed Puma, who justified the award lamented that most public officials especially politicians see the media as a partner that should be held at arm’s length.
“But we believe that those who court the media in their public life stand a better chance of succeeding in their assignments,” he added.
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