By Habiba Nasiru
The African Media Development Foundation, (AMDF) held its second annual media clinic to mark the World Press Freedom Day on Tuesday 3rd May 2016 in Kaduna, Nigeria.
The event which had in attendance journalists, media practitioners and civil society organizations focused on press freedom and safety of the journalist in Nigeria and Africa.
Presenting a paper titled “Understanding the Freedom of Information Act”, Abel Adejor from LEADS Nigeria pointed out the importance of the FOI law as a “major tool for fighting corruption, as it can be used in enhancing accountability and transparency in governance”.
He therefore called for an effective collaboration between the Media and the civil societies to ensure the FOI law is duly adhered to.
The high point of the event was the panel discussion focusing on press freedom and safety of journalists in Nigeria and Africa, with Ahmed Maiyaki as the Anchor and Balarabe Ahmed, Garba Muhammad and Christiana Alabi as discussants.
Balarabe Ahmed from the Mass Communications Department, Kaduna Polytechnic lamented the dilemma of the journalism profession and the way journalism is perceived in the world. He thus proffered a synergy between the classroom and what is obtainable in the journalism industry.
The Chairman of Nigerian Union of Journalists (NUJ), Kaduna State, Garba Mohammed decried dangers faced by journalists in carrying out their social responsibility as he unveiled measures being taken to improve the journalism practice in Kaduna.
Speaking on the challenges faced by female practitioners, Christiana Alabi noted the negative public perception of the profession in relation with the female gender. She then called on female journalists to hold onto their values in spite of the pressure they face.
The event also featured Award presentations to deserving individuals. The Lifetime Achievement Awards went to Alhaji Lawal Saulawa and Mr. Joseph Edegbo and the ‘Courage in Journalism Awards’ went to Ibrahima Yakubu of Duestche Welle Radio; Mohammad Ibrahim of Peoples Daily Newspapers; Bashir Bello of Nigerian Pilot Newspapers and Christiana Alabi of Daily Trust Newspapers.
The event came to an end as Dr. Yila Umaru; Member of the Board of Directors, AMDF gave the vote of thanks, shortly followed by closing prayers.