Northern Nigerian Breaking News

2024 World Press Freedom Day: FG restates commitment to protect rights of journalists

As the world celebrates the 2024 World Press Freedom Day, the Federal Government has restated its commitment to protect the rights of journalists and promote responsible journalism in the country.

The Minister of Information and National Orientation made this known in his remarks at the Ministerial Press Briefing to celebrate the day on Friday in Abuja.

The event also featured the Minister of State, Federal Ministry of Environment, Dr Iziaq Salako and Mr Abdourahamane Diallo, UNESCO country representative in Nigeria. 

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The event with the theme “A Press for the Planet: Journalism in the Face of the Environmental Crisis” was organised by the Ministry of Information and National Orientation.

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Though President Bola Tinubu promised to uphold press freedom in December, his administration has been riddled with attacks against journalists, especially by state forces in the last one year. 

A groundbreaking court decision may have helped to draw back years of abuse of power by the Nigerian authorities against the press. 

Following a suit instituted by the non-profit Media Rights Agenda (MRA) in 2021, the Federal High Court maintained its ruling in January that the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) cannot unilaterally impose fines on news stations for supposedly breaching the broadcasting code, as that would mean it was exercising judicial powers.

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Reporters Without Borders has yet to release the global press freedom report and ranking for 2024. But in its last update, it noted that Nigeria moved up six places and is now ranked 123 out of 180 countries. In the same vein, the country’s score improved by a few points.

The Media Foundation for West Africa (MWFA) has, however, said the country still has a long way to go, pointing out that politically troubled Burkina Faso and Niger Republic have better scorecards.


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