Africa Media Development Foundation (AMDF), a media developmental organization, has been urged to direct its trainings on peace journalism so as to encourage reporting on issues that unite, rather than divide, the nation.
The Kaduna Controller of News and Current Affairs Department of Desmin Independent Television (DITV), Shuaibu Gimi, gave the advice on Thursday when a team from AMDF paid the organization an advocacy visit in its Kaduna office.
According to him, Nigeria is beginning to be divided along religious and ethnic lines; as such the media could be used to drive issues on peace and the need for unity, stressing that it could be done when journalists are trained to report on that aspect. He, however, lauded AMDF’s programs, especially in encouraging developmental journalism saying, “Journalism is more than reporting government activities but reporting from the other way round.”
In her remarks, AMDF coordinator, Sekyen Dadik, who led the delegation, said one of AMDF’s aims is to promote professional excellences in media and journalism through capacity building for journalists, adding that, her organization has trained over 100 journalists in Kaduna in different programs such as fundamentals of journalism, internship, media ethics and mentoring, human rights reporting and online journalism, among others.
She explained that AMDF focuses on developmental, investigative reporting as well as data-driven journalism, stressing that the media serves as a platform that gives (and should give) voice to the voiceless in the society.
She said, “We are out to promote developmental journalism; we realized that it is a platform that provides the leverage for media organization to reach out to communities, because as a media we are the voice of the community and voice of the people.
“We encourage journalists to go into communities and see issues for themselves, as there are many communities underserved in terms of water, health facilities and so many others,” she pointed out.
Dadik noted that AMDF has also motivated a group of investigative reporters, who were drawn from different mediums, and have been involved in developmental reporting that has brought interventions to some communities in the state; positing that, such kinds of reports attract awards and recognition to journalists and media organizations.
Africa Media Development Foundation is a nonprofit, nonpolitical organisation that supports journalists, media development and promotes freedom-of-the-Press. Its activities include: training, advocacy, research, coordination and information sharing.