Media stakeholders have urged the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) to put in place necessary mechanisms to check the excesses of some private radio and television stations in the country.
The appeal was made in a communiqué at the end of a two-day seminar on Media and Society, signed by Abdulkadir Ibrahim, Consultant to the Kano State Ministry of Information, made available to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja.
The communiqué said that adequate mechanism would ensure that sanity prevailed in the industry and for public good, unity and tranquility.
It said that NBC should enforce compliance of the Nigerian Broadcasting Code by owners of broadcast stations and operators of media “training” institutions, particularly with regards to recruitment of personnel.
According to the communiqué, the NUJ, NGE and the Newspaper Proprietors Association of Nigeria should ensure the implementation of the eligibility criteria for entry into and practice of journalism in Nigeria.
It said that the implementation of the eligibility criteria should be in line with the Nigerian Press Council Decree No 85 of 1992 (Now Act).
“All professional and trade unions of media workers and owners, notably the NUJ, NGE, BON and NPAN should partner with the Nigerian Press Council.
“Make it mandatory for all potential journalists to register with the relevant professional and regulatory bodies after fulfilling a basic requirement and be accredited to practice.
“They must also sign to uphold the code of conduct and ethics for Nigerian Journalists.’’
It further called on journalists to perform their duties in accordance with the rule and regulations, code of conduct and ethics, legislation, the guidelines of regulatory and professional bodies.
It added that they should also be conscious of the laws of libel and slander, accurate and fair in reporting events and respect the privacy of individuals, rights and privileges of children and minors.
“Journalists should uphold the obligations of the mass media as provided in the 1999 Constitution as amended while complying with section 39 of the Constitution.
“They should be emotionally intelligent at all times; think constructively; act wisely; seek and report the truth and promote public good and national unity.
“They should constantly update their knowledge through training and re-training, seminars and refresher courses while employers should ensure regular professional and technical training of their staff to meet the challenges of insufficient and unprofessional manpower.”
It also called on the National Assembly to hasten the passage of the “Journalism Enhancement Bill’ into law.
It said the bill proposed minimum entry point for editorial staff, conditions of service to commensurate with what obtained at the Federal Civil Service and the payment of Hazard Allowance to journalists, among others.
The communique also stated that the media should be fully utilised by the government in societal re-orientation on patriotism, discipline, good neighbourliness, peaceful coexistence and adherence to the rule of law.