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NPO, IBAN, BON, NUJ, NGE condemn attacks on media houses

By Sunday Aikulola
28 October 2020   |   4:35 am
Media owners and professionals, yesterday, visited their members whose organisations were attacked during the #EndSARS protests and condemned those who carried out the attacks.

Chief Executive, Television Continental (TVC) Communications, Andrew Hanlon (right); Chairman/Editor-in-Chief, Thisday/Arise TV, Nduka Obaigbena; former Governor, Ogun State, Aremo Olusegun Osoba; General Secretary, Newspaper Proprietors’ Association of Nigeria (NPAN), Comfort Obi; Publisher, Vanguard, Sam Amuka; renowned journalist, Ray Ekpu; Social/Publicity Secretary, Nigerian Guild of Editors, Ken Ugbechie; Managing Director, New Telegraph, Ayodele Aminu and Publisher, The Guardian, Lady Maiden Alex-Ibru during the NPAN’s solidarity visit to The Nation and TVC Communications in Lagos…yesterday. PHOTO: FEMI ADEBESIN-KUTI

Media owners and professionals, yesterday, visited their members whose organisations were attacked during the #EndSARS protests and condemned those who carried out the attacks.

The Nigerian Press Organisation (NPO) Independent Broadcasters Association of Nigeria (IBAN), Nigerian Union of Journalists (NUJ), Broadcasting Organisation of Nigeria (BON) and Nigerian Guild of Editors (NGE) were among groups that visited The Nation Newspapers and Television Continental (TVC).  

President of NPO, Nduka Obaigbena, said: “Without free speech and freedom of expression, there will be no democracy. So, no matter what we do, we must always support free speech and as journalists, we would never bow or be cowed. We must always pursue truth, report facts, give sound analysis and guide our nation at all times.

“The Nation in one of its editorials supported free expression by the protesters. We still support what they stand for, police reform and an orderly society. We will continue to support what the youths stand for in bringing back a better Nigeria, but we don’t support those who use violence to settle political scores.”

Also speaking, Ray Ekpu said: “The media is becoming endangered specie. The media fought for democracy. The system also attacks us. I read that NBC has penalised and harassed some broadcast stations. This is not how things are done in other countries. There is something called the right of reply. That is unfair, no system works like that and we must fight it or else, they will damage the media in Nigeria.  

On his part, NUJ President, Chris Isiguzo, noted that the media remains central to the survival of democracy and delivery of good governance, adding: “And we believe that a responsible government must unmask those behind the dastardly act. We survived it during the military and we will not be cowed.”

Responding, Managing Director of Vintage Press, Publishers of The Nation Newspapers, Wale Edun, commended the leadership of the media for the visit, saying: “We thank you for standing by us. We are most happy that no life was lost, even though equipment were looted, cars and buildings burnt.”

Also, Publisher of The Guardian, Lady Maiden Alex-Ibru, appealed to the Lagos State Government and the authorities not to close the Ikoyi toll bridge to avoid inconveniencing residents of the area.

During the visit to TVC Communications, its Chief Executive Officer, Andrew Hanlon, said TVC Communications and its broadcasting stations supported peaceful and democratic objectives of the #EndSARS movement and would continue to provide balanced news coverage going forward .

Some media personalities on the visit are, Publisher of Vanguard Newspapers, Sam Amuka, Managing Director, New Telegraph, Ayodele Aminu, Treasurer of NGE, Victoria Ibanga, former Governor of Ogun State, Olusegun Osoba, Chairman of NUJ, Lagos State chapter, Quasim Akinreti and General Manager, Publications of Vanguard, Gbenga Adefaye.