Journalists in Nigeria have been urged to hold political leaders accountable for their actions and be ready to tell truth to powers, as the country prepares for general elections in February.
“As we are moving towards 2019 elections, I want you to see yourselves as ambassadors of righteousness,” Samuel Udia, an apostle, said on Sunday at the Apostolic Church, Ifa Atai, Etoi, in Uyo, during a Thanksgiving service to herald the 2018 press week of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Akwa Ibom State Council.
“Report the truth without fear of those in authorities.
“Most leaders in this country don’t know God, and, therefore, don’t know the truth,” Mr Udia said.
He added, “We must keep telling them the truth, with the hope they will someday accept the truth and do the right things for the sake of the people and this country.”
The chairman of NUJ in the state, Patrick Albert, said journalists are the only professionals who do not embark on a nation-wide industrial action in Nigeria because of the love of the profession and the country.
The Commissioner for Information in the state, Charles Udoh, who was a guest of the NUJ at the Thanksgiving service, said journalists were paramount to the survival of any government in Nigeria.
Mr Udoh said Akwa Ibom has enjoyed “great peace” in the past three years under the administration of Governor Udom Emmanuel.
“I am not sure there is any governor in this country who loves God and prayers the way Governor Udom Emmanuel does,” he said.
The commissioner, however, said there were people who wanted to destroy the peace in the state because of politics.
He appealed to Akwa Ibom people to support the administration to succeed.
Prayers were offered for journalists in the state, Akwa Ibom and Nigeria.
“We have seen the signs every where — people are beating drums of war, whereas election is not war,” Emmanuel Eduongo, a journalist and a pastor, said, while praying for peace in Akwa Ibom.
The NUJ will hold a rally on Monday in Uyo to advocate for peace in the forthcoming general elections in Nigeria.