Menu Close

WPFD 2024: Nigerian Government affirms press freedom, responsible media coverage key to environmental sustainability

L-R: Mr. Bayo Onanuga, Special Adviser to the President on Information and Strategy; Dr. Ngozi Onwudiwe, Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Information and National Orientation; Alhaji Mohammed Idris, Honourable Minister for Information and National Orientation; Dr. Isiak Adekunle Salako, Minister of State, Environment; and Abdourahamane Diallo, Head of Abuja UNESCO Office Photo: FMINO

*Mohammed Idris, Minister for Information and National Orientation, on the occasion of commentating this year’s World Press Freedom Day, emphasises that President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s administration recognises the importance of responsible media coverage in enlightening, informing, and educating Nigerians and the world

Gbenga Kayode | ConsumerConnect

The Federal Government has said press freedom is not just a fundamental human right but also an essential for environmental sustainability.

ConsumerConnect reports Alhaji Mohammed Idris, Honourable Minister for Information and National Orientation, fnipr, stated this in his speech delivered Friday, May 3, 2024, at the Joint Ministerial Press Conference in celebration of the 2024 World Press Freedom Day (WPFD), held at the National Press Centre, Radio House, Abuja, FCT.

The Ministry of Information and National Orientation had organised a Joint Press Conference with Federal Ministry of Environment and UNESCO, which featured Minister of State, Environment, Dr. Isiak Adekunle Salako, and Head of Abuja UNESCO office, Abdourahamane Diallo.

The theme of this year’s World Press Freedom Day as, “A Press for the Planet: Journalism in the face of the Environmental Crisis”.

Mohammed, in his address, noted that without a free and independent press, humanity could not hope to address the complex environmental challenges facing consumers worldwide.

The Minister said: “Disinformation and misinformation undermine public understanding of environmental issues and hinder our ability to take meaningful action.”

He also explained that the situation called for an immediate action as “we are confronted by an environmental crisis of unprecedented magnitude, one that poses a threat not only to our planet but to the very future of humanity.”

Among other issues, Idris stated that climate change, biodiversity loss, pollution, and resource depletion are now harsh realities that demand immediate and decisive action in Nigeria.

The Minister affirmed: “In the face of this crisis, journalists emerge as guardians of truth and champions of accountability.

“They illuminate environmental injustices, expose wrongdoing, and amplify the voices of those most affected by environmental degradation.”

According to him, through their investigative reporting, the media professionals hold governments and corporations accountable for their actions and advocate policies that promote sustainability and safeguard the planet.

“This year’s theme resonates deeply with our Ministry’s vision and President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s priority areas, which prioritise restoring trust, reorienting national values, and creating an enabling environment for the media.

“It underscores the crucial role of journalism in addressing the environmental crisis,” stated he.

The Minister further asserted that President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s administration recognises the importance of responsible media coverage in enlightening, informing, and educating Nigerian consumers, and the world.

He averred: “Through credible and timely information, everyone can be well-informed, and the media can serve as a valuable tool for fostering transparency and accountability.”

In regard to security of members of the Fourth Estate of the Realm and environmental defenders on duty, Idris acknowledged that journalists often confront threats, harassment, and violence for their courageous efforts at exposing environmental crimes and protecting the natural world.

He also stated: “As we celebrate World Press Freedom Day, we must reaffirm our unwavering commitment to protecting the rights of journalists and ensuring their safety and security.

“As a Ministry and Government, we provided the most unfettered access to Journalists and provided the enabling environment that has continued to encourage the Nigeria media grow in leaps and bounds.”

Minister Idris added: “It is our conviction, that press freedom is not just a fundamental human right; it is also essential for environmental sustainability.

“Without a free and independent press, we cannot hope to address the complex environmental challenges we face.”

In regard to how disinformation and misinformation undermine public understanding of environmental issues and hinder their ability to take meaningful action, the Minister urged all stakeholders to “staunchly defend press freedom and support the work of journalists who are dedicated to reporting the truth.”

He equally urged the press to uphold the tenets of journalism by being factual, truthful and responsible in their reporting.

“The need to be nationalistic and patriotic cannot be over-emphasised,” Idris added.

Kindly Share This Story

 

 

 

 

Kindly share this story