WPFD 2024: Reps celebrate journalists, keen on climate education 

Leah TwakiMay 3, 20243 min

The House of Representatives celebrates the nation’s journalists and media practitioners on World Press Freedom Day 2024.

In commemoration of World Press Freedom Day (WPFD 2024), the  House of Representatives celebrates the nation’s journalists and media practitioners.

Commemorated on May 3 annually, the observance of Press Freedom Day highlights the importance of a free media for healthy democracies and provides an opportunity to celebrate journalists as agents of public good.

In a statement jointly signed by, House Spokesman Rep. Akin Rotimi Jr. and Chairman of the House Committee on Climate Change, Rep. Chris Nkwonta, the House underscored the significance of media engagement in promoting transparency, accountability, and good governance. 

The statement reads “In this light, we celebrate and honour the work of every journalist and media practitioner across our country as they exercise their duty of upholding the fundamental objectives contained in the constitution, as well as, upholding the responsibility and accountability of government to the people.”

Acknowledging the global theme, ‘A Press for the Planet: Journalism in the Face of the Environmental Crisis,’ the House emphasized the pivotal role journalists play in raising awareness amidst the daunting challenges posed by climate change. 

Stating that “Our country, Nigeria, is not excluded from this fight, since it is now ranked as one of the most vulnerable to climate change. This is reflected in the numerous issues we encounter, including flooding, drought, food insecurity, erosion, harsh weather, and even conflicts caused by resource shortages and struggle.”

The House further noted that “Millions of Nigerians turn to the media for answers and explanations in the face of these terrible and ever-changing circumstances. Hence, the media needs to accept responsibility and rewrite the story to make the main reason for these problems clear to the public. Amongst other initiatives, ample reporting on the complex reasons of conflicts brought on by climate change and other environmental effects will enable people to grasp the larger picture and the best ways to address the issue.”

Assuring commitment to upholding press freedom and fostering an open parliamentary environment, The House of Representatives acknowledges the Nigerian media as one of the most vibrant institutions in the country. In this regard, the House noted that “We are working to engage the media in reviewing laws and practices that restrict press freedom and the ability of the media to carry out their constitutional role. 

“As outlined in Agenda 6: Inclusion and Open Parliament of our Legislative Agenda (2023 – 2027), we are also enhancing good governance practices, transparency and accountability through media chats, public hearings, town halls, etc., amongst other scheduled legislative actions.

“We seize the opportunity of this important day, to call on journalists and media practitioners across our country to uphold responsible, independent, and fact-based journalism as it helps in protecting our democracy. Let us uphold the responsible use of digital media and embrace the journalistic values of trust, truth and integrity at all times.

“We remain steadfast in support of press freedom as well as a healthy and democratic media environment.”

Leah Twaki

A Chemistry graduate, excels as a social media manager, digital journalist, and content creator with an interdisciplinary skills blend of science and communication.

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