Censorship, political interference bane of Nigerian media – RATTAWU

Censorship, political interference bane of Nigerian media – RATTAWU
February 19 17:16 2016

The Radio, Television, Theatre and Arts Workers Union of Nigeria (RATTAWU) has said that over-censorship and political interference were the bane of the Nigerian Media.

National President of the union, Comrade Yemisi Bamgbose, in a reaction to the sack of 26 Directors-General of federal government’s media parastatals in the nation recently, said government’s undue censorship and unnecessary interference in the professional judgment of its media-controlled organizations, had always had a negative effect on the expected professional competence and development of such organisations.

Bamgbose, who spoke to labour correspondents after the Union’s meeting in Abuja yesterday, explained that such undue interference in the professional competence by political leaders, would not enhance goals but introduce god-fatherism by non-professionals whose stake was to serve their masters’ voice.

He expressed regrets that media practitioners, being stakeholders in the industry, always appreciate the prerequisite of government in the appointment and removal of its political heads appointees but argued that such appointments and removals at the pleasure of any government in power, would not enhance professional competence and goal-setting, especially in the 21st century era of media development.

Bamgbose noted that the problem in the Nigerian media today was not about professional competence on the job but what obtained in the political system, and called for the constitution of a media stakeholder forum, aimed at determining the expected high performance of media in Nigeria.

However, the RATTAWU president stressed that while it was essential that government should always undertake a thorough over-hauling in the system, the constitution review committee of the National Assembly should create good laws including television and radio sets tax laws to allow the professionals in their workplace operate well to enhance optimum performance.

He stressed the need for government to always look inwards at getting competent hands from the system to enhance the credibility, stability and competence which shall support the media heads in performance and have a rest of mind.

Bamgbose also enjoined government on an adequate funding plan which shall support equipment performance in the hands of competent media personnel at all times, particularly information and culture sector to turn a money-spinning venture.

He advised the Ministry of Labour and Salaries and Wages Commission to remunerate media practitioners duely as an elixir for their optimum professional performance.

The RATTAWU President expressed regrets that such essential equipment were not available presently to run the system unlike what obtained in the world and were run on competent hands, especially in the realisation of the 2017 television digitalization policy deadline.

He commended government for undertaking a due process in the nation’s general administration, economically, politically and socially in the last few months.

According to him, the plan shall ensure the foundation of a proper and credible objective which shall make the masses appreciate the effect of governance.