Only tyrants dread journalists’ presence, says Kogi CAN

Bishop John Ibeno

The Kogi State chapter of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) has said that only tyrants dread the presence of journalists, stressing that journalism, with its many challenges, was like missionary work.

Its chairman, Bishop John Ibeno, said this while commending journalists in the state for holding forth, enlightening, entertaining and educating Nigerians on sundry socio-economic and political issues in the country.

He stated this through his wife, Mrs. Magret Ibenu, at the Chapel of Freedom International Church Lokoja during the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) press week, saying the world is standing today because of what has been written and documented.

She used the Bible to highlight the importance of journalism profession, adding that without the works of writers, there would have been no Bible, which she described as the bedrock of Christianity.

“Journalism is of God. The pen is mightier than the sword. The pen is a witness, which helps people to know. The pen records and it is a watchman that coins references to ages. The Bible is a pen, the book of Genesis is a pen, hence the world needs journalism,” she said.

She said that journalists are threatened on a daily basis just as they face diverse challenges in carrying out their duties, even in the war front, pointing out that they are sometimes kidnapped, exposed to grave dangers or even killed.

She said the challenges and risks associated with the profession were real adding: “Only tyrants dread the presence of journalists.”

Ibenu listed the challenges of journalism profession to include, issues of integrity, bribery, fake news and intimidation, noting that the other dangerous challenge was social media, which she said, always conveys fake news, yet the blame goes to the conventional journalists.

“You must make a decision of personal ethics in addition to the ethics of the profession. People are praying for you, we are standing by you. We know the risks involved in your job and the threats,” she added.

In her sermon, she decried lack of common sense among the people, saying if only they could have the wisdom of the ant, they would do greater exploits.

She said although the ants are tiny, they are full of wisdom, as they store food for the rainy day.

NUJ Chairman, Adeza Momoh Jimoh, thanked the church for the opportunity, saying the service was part of activities that heralded NUJ’s press week.

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