A Former member of Federal House of Representatives, Mr. Ifaluyi Isibor has urged journalists not to give up despite the challenges and hazards in the profession.
He added “if you do, there will be no hope.”
Isibor, who was a representative of Ikpoba-Okha/Egor constituencies at the National Assembly said this on Saturday, at Edo secretariat of the Nigerian Union of Journalists(NUJ), Benin, while addressing members of the union.
He also urged the government in various levels to reward journalists, especially during Covid-19 pandemic period, just like they are currently rewarding health workers amid the Covid-19 pandemic.
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“Outside water which people say is the most important thing in life, I will say it is the journalists that are much more important, one may need the water but you need the news to direct you on how and where to get the water.
“News is life, after that, all other word or phrase will follow.
“When the civil war was raging, the soldiers said, we sacrifice our today for your tomorrow; same thing that journalists are doing today; please don’t give up as journalists, if you do, there will be no hope”, He said
He said that journalists deserved commendation for constraining their today for others to give a future.
“Without the Press the health workers can not even know what is prevailing in the system in the current struggle to surmount the Coronavirus pandemic, hence, government should also reward Journalists like the health workers”, Isibor said
He said that the purpose of information is to save or keep the people abreast with the latest trend, adding that for that information to get to the people, journalists are needed.
He further said that journalists played an important roles in our society, hence cannot be compared to any others.
“Journalists come before any other thing, now look at the coronavirus pandemic, rather than praising the health workers alone, we should also praise the men who blow the whistle which are the pressmen” he said
On his part, the state council chairman of NUJ, Mr Roland Osakue, urged members of the union to embrace investigative journalisms.
He called on stakeholders, especially the security personnel to allow journalists to carry out their constitutional duty.
Mr. Pius Oiwoh, the Secretary of the Nigerian Bar Association, Benin Branch, assured the NUJ on the association’s support to fight for its constitutional right.
Also, Mr Osazee Edigin, the Public Relations Officer of the Edo Civil Society Organisations, noted that the role of the press in area of dissemination of information cannot be undermined, adding that the role of journalists had helped CSOs to fight its challenges.