Fake news: Minister urges media to stop bashing Nigeria’s Military
The Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, has appealed to some section of the Nigeria media to leave Nigerian military out of any hatred they might have against the government.
The minister made the appeal on Thursday at the opening ceremony of a 2-day conference organised by the Nigerian Army in conjunction with the Nigerian Guild of Editors, Nigeria Union of Journalists, Guild of Corporate Online Publishers and Guild of Professional Bloggers, at the army resource center Abuja.
He said while the media had the responsibility to inform the populace on war against terrorism in the northeast, it must not play into the hands of Boko haram propaganda by emphasizing more on the attacks perpetrated by the terrorists than the successes recorded by the military.
He said ”The media should verify before breaking the new as it always in a jury to do, but it should not break up the country because of breaking new.
“When Baga was invaded by Boko haram almost every media houses in the country rush into publishing. Unfortunately when the military recovered Baga only two newspapers use it on the front page.
”Terrorism strives in publicity, and the media is oxygen to the terrorists propaganda. You may not like the government of the day but leave the military out of political partisanship.”
”Taking side with the military against the terrorists is about the military but about Nigeria.”
Lai also urged the media to avoid fake news as it is more dangerous than any weapon.
Earlier in his remarks, the Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen. Tukur Buratai, said the conference was timely as the country battle terrorism and insurgency.
He charged the media to carry out its constitutional responsibility of informing and shaping public perception and public opinion, it must do so engender national security.
”The effect of terrorists propaganda dampens troops morale in the front line, hence affecting their performances to defend the country,” he said.