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Ari urges caution as NUJ remembers fallen journalists in Plateau

By Isa Abdulsalami Ahovi, Jos   |   23 May 2017   |   3:40 am  

Director General, Industrial Training Fund (ITF), Sir Joseph Ari

The Director General of the Industrial Training Fund (ITF), Sir Joseph Ari has described journalism as a tasking and risky profession as the journalists could not do a good job without stepping on toes from time to time.

Ari, who was guest speaker at the Memorial Lecture and Fund Raising Ceremony for fallen journalists in Plateau State, noted that in the course of performing the duties, journalists were oftentimes exposed to danger, which may lead to their untimely but painful death.

He advised journalists to be apolitical and unbiased in their reportage of news and events as they were expected to balance truth in their reports to members of the public.

“But in the course of trying to report the truth, many toes are stepped upon. Life expectancy of journalists is very low because of the hazards of their profession,” he said.

It would be recalled that eight journalists lost their lives in the line of duty about 10 years ago during Joshua Dariye administration in Plateau while on his convoy for inspection of projects in Shendam.

“Many journalists are physically maimed in the War fronts and conflict zones, Ari who is himself a journalist and broadcaster stated, adding that most of the times, reporters face harassments and premeditated assaults by the military, the police and the state security service, among others just to prevent them from exposing grievous issues.

He, however, said that risks have become an integral part of journalism, adding that they should tread softly by making safety uppermost in their minds.

Ari said the day still evoked strong memories in him having interacted intimately with most of the deceased either as Chief Press Secretary to governors Fidelis Tapgun and Mohammed Mana, as General Manager, Plateau Publishing Company (PPC) and Plateau Radio Television Corporation (PRTVC), or as Permanent Secretary, Government House.

“Although, death is a necessary end, I commend the initiative of the Executive Council and members of the Plateau State Chapter of the Nigerian Union of Journalists (NUJ) for ensuring that their memories of the deceased are not forgotten.

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