National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) ordered media chambers to refrain from disclosing details of assaults of bandits and terrorists.
NBC made this known on Friday.
The statement reads, “Headlines of most newspapers on daily basis are replete with security topics. While bringing information on security to the doorsteps of Nigerians is a necessity, there is a need for caution as too much detail may have adverse implications on the efforts of our security officials who are duty-bound to deal with the insurgency.”
“Some of the topics also have ethnological coating thereby, pitching one section of the country against the other and leaving in Nigerians in daily hysteria.”
NBC implored broadcast stations to be guided by provisions of sections 5.4.1(f) and 5.4.3 of the NBC Code which stipulates that “the broadcaster shall not transmit divisive materials that may threaten or compromise the divisibility and indissolubility of Nigeria as a sovereign state.
“In reporting conflict situations, the broadcaster shall perform the role of a peace agent by adhering to the principle of responsibility, accuracy, and neutrality. The commission, therefore, enjoins broadcasters to collaborate with the government in dealing with the security challenges by not glamourizing the nefarious activities of insurgents, terrorists, kidnappers, bandits, etc.”
Angry reactions have greeted the statement on social media.
On Facebook, Godwin Nwabueze wrote, “Look what useless and nothing-good-presidency and APC party has turned this blessed and beautiful nation too.
“How can you be ruling human beings like animals? Aww! So we don’t have the right to speak up again including the media.”
Joe Abuajah said, “Gagging the media is a major assignment for this government. In 2015, they commenced it stylishly, and to them, all the needful underground job has been successfully concluded.“
Another Nigerian, identified as Tochukwu Idigo, lamented, “Is this really a country with the constitution or just a settlement without objectives? I’m tired mehn!!!! One cannot even hope for anything good in this contraption.”
Several other Nigerians also shared their views on Twitter.
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