Journalists brainstorm on election reporting

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Journalists across
the South West of the country yesterday converged on Ibadan, the Oyo
State capital, to discuss ways of handling the challenges of reporting
during the forthcoming elections and how to overcome them.

The four-day
workshop taking place at D-Rovans Hotel, is jointly organised by the
United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), Institute for Peace and
Conflict Resolution (IPCR) and Norwegian Agency for Development
Cooperation (NORAD).

In his opening
speech, Biodun Onadipe, analyst on peace and conflict issues from the
UNDP, told the participants that their mission is to promote elections
through good reporting.

While noting that
the workshop will be the third in the series, he emphasised the need
for journalists to update their knowledge regularly, stressing that
there is no end to learning. Similarly, the facilitator of the
workshop, Austin Onuola, called on media practitioners to be cautious
of their reports, urging them to avoid sensationalism. He challenged
participants to engage in investigative journalism and constructive
criticism.

In his welcome
address, Director General of the Institute for Peace and Conflict
Resolution (IPCR), Joseph Golwa said the training will avail
journalists the skills to explore possible areas of agreement between
opposition groups. Mr Golwa, who was represented by Bakut Bakut
appealed to participants to ensure that they teach what they have
learnt to other colleagues who were not privileged to be part of the
workshop. “Please bear in mind that Nigerians hold in high esteem the
success of the forthcoming election. You journalists are well placed to
determine this success by your reports. Therefore, if every vote must
count, then every news-worthy report must also count for peaace.” He
said.


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