Shun inciting reports, Abegunrin tells journalists
MEDIA Practitioners have been charged to cultivate the habit of giving truthful accounts of events and situations in their daily reportage.
This admonition was given by the Catholic Archbishop of Ibadan, Most Rev Gabriel Abegunrin, during Year 2023 World Communications Day, held at St Mary Catholic Church, Oke-Padre, Ibadan.
Archbishop Abegunrin challenged journalists not to be afraid to proclaim the truth but be courageous in their reporting.
Speaking on the theme for the 57th World Communications Day, “Speaking with the heart: The truth in love”, taken from St Paul’s letter to the Ephesians, Chapter 4 verse 15, the archbishop urged media workers to engage in communication that will foster unity and love among the citizenry.
He charged journalists to deploy their tools to propagate truth, love, peace and shun inciting reports.
“Communication should be open to dialogue. Communicate to bring love, peace, unity to the world”, Abegunrin noted.
While commending media practitioners in their roles in keeping the citizens abreast with happenings and progress in society, he charged them to be responsible in the use of social media, maintaining that communication is meant to build, unite, and not to destroy or divide people.
Giving a summary of Pope Francis’ message on the event, Archbishop Abegunrin informed that the Holy Father called for a cordial communication from the heart in order to speak well thereby promoting a language of peace among others.
In his remarks Oyo State Commissioner for Information, Culture and Tourism, Wasiu Olatubosun commended the Catholic Archdiocese of Ibadan for the yearly programme.
The commissioner, who was represented by Director of Culture in the ministry, Pastor Gideon Alade, enjoined Christians to always strive to speak the truth so as to reap the blessing and benefits.
In his speech, the Director of Social Communications, Catholic Archdiocese of Ibadan, Rev Fr Anthony Akiwowo, noted that the theme of celebration was apt, especially in recent times when truth has been relegated to the background.
Fr. Akiwowo appealed to all to cultivate a habit of speaking the truth with a heart of love.
Contributing, Chairman, Nigeria Union of Journalists’ Oyo State Council, Mr Ademola Babalola, while commending the archbishop for his works in the archdiocese, cautioned media practitioners to avoid reports that can heat up the polity.
In his vote of thanks, chairman, planning committee for the event, Rev Fr Victor Ugbor, thanked all that graced the occasion, urging them to maintain the spirit of love, peace and unity in the practice of the profession.