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‘Why Muslim organisations should support the media’

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Muslim philanthropists as well as corporate organisations have been urged to step up their support for the media by strengthening the capacity of the practitioners as well as media institutions.

This is part of the resolutions reached at the annual conference of the Muslim Media Practitioners of Nigeria (MMPN), Lagos state chapter held recently.

With Islam, Muslims and the Nigerian Media as theme, the conference drew participants from print, electronic and online media, government functionaries, academia Islamic organizations.

Other resolutions include the need for Muslims organisations to improve their visibility through participating in other activities that could help address the challenges confronting the society; while urging the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) to demonstrate disciplinary capacity and the political will to sanction erring members over unprofessional conduct.

With the observation of low investment in the media by Muslims, the conference therefore, urged Muslim businessmen not only to invest heavily in media business, but also to engage in a robust patronage of the media.

And in order to promote harmonious co-existence, government is also tasked to exercise the power to sanction journalists or their employers as deemed appropriate for publishing fabricated reports against any religion.

Also recommended is the pursuit of global education (i.e. both Islamic and Western) and facilitation of regular and periodic training for MMPN members particularly the youths with a view to stimulate manpower development of Muslim journalists. Special focus is canvassed for female Muslim journalists by encouraging more women to take up journalism as their career. The need for regular awareness and sensitization programmes including visitations to media house in order to foster better understanding of Islam and Muslims, and thereby stem the tide of negative portrayal of the religion and its faithful in the media.

In exploring the international media sponsorships, MMPN is charged to collaborate with Muslim media practitioners in the Diaspora to maximise opportunities, while inauguration of MMPN Trust Fund is advocated with a view to executing capital projects for the association to the benefit of members, and the nation at large.

The conference scored high point with the parade of dignitaries including the Lagos State Governor, Mr Akinwunmi Ambode, who was represented by Dr. AbdulHakeem AbdulLateef; Deputy Governor, Dr. Idiat Oluranti Adebule represented by Mrs Rahmat Folashade Lediju; the Commissioner for Home Affairs, Dr. AbdulHakeem AbdulLateef; Professor Lai Olurode, Chairman University of Lagos Muslim Community; Professor Ishaq Lakin Akintola, LASU; Alhaji Liad Tella, Senior Research Fellow, University of Ilorin; Dr, Ismail Ibraheem UNILAG; Dr. Misbaudeen Akintunde Akanni, School of Communication, LASU; Alhaji AbdulRasaq AbdulSalaam, Voice of Nigeria; Dr Qasim Akinreti, Chairman, NUJ, Lagos Council, Hajia Sekinah Lawal, Chairpersn , NAWOJ, Lagos among other guest.

Three papers presented at the conference were“From Iwe Irohin till date: Analysis of Reportage of Islam and Muslims in the Nigerian Media”; “Imperatives of Media Ownership by Nigerian Muslims; and “A Critical Analysis of Media Use Habit Among Nigerian Muslims”.


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