Bakare Bemoans Fate Of Nigerian Media


Pastor Tunde Bakare.

Convener of the Save Nigeria Group, Pastor Tunde Bakare has bemoaned the fate of the  Nigerian media. He spoke at celebrations marking the 30th anniversary of Lagos  Television (LTV) which took place  at the Blue Roof Broadcasting Complex of Lagos  Television on Alhaji Lateef Jakande Road, Agidingbi, Ikeja, Lagos, SouthWest  Nigeria.

Pastor Tunde Bakare

Delivering a lecture titled, “The Role of the Media In Sustaining Democracy”,  Bakare lamented that in its attempt to fulfill its stated objectives, the Nigerian  media has been subjected to all manner of attacks by successive governments in the  country.

According to Pastor Bakare, “Whatever the Nigerian Media suffered under the colonial  regime paled into insignificance compared to what has happened to it in  post-independence Nigeria,” adding that in fulfilling the role of its news function,  the interpretation function and the opinion as well as the corollary function of  information and entertainment in the post- Independence, the Nigerian Media has been  subjected to harassment and assassination of its brightest members without the  authorities doing anything to fish out the killers.

Also speaking at the event, the Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babatunde Fashola enjoined  the Nigerian media to help protect the nation’s young democracy through accurate  reporting.

Governor Fashola noted that the Nigerian Press has the wherewithal to project the  image of the country by creating the right impression before the international  community.

He said although the Nigerian Constitution guaranteed freedom of speech and other  types of freedom, none of the freedoms was limitless adding that every freedom spelt  out has corresponding duties and has limits.

He admonished the press to always do a thorough investigation on every story before  publication, Governor Fashola declared.

“If the freedom of speech, freedom of expression, popularly encapsulated in the idea  of a free press, must foster and strengthen democracy, our media must renew its  investigative capacity, its research capacity and its analytical capacity”.

“This is the only way that it can discharge its primary purpose of informing,  educating and enlightening the people. This is the only way that it can separate  facts from fiction; this is the only way that it can separate opinion from facts and  also from rumour,” the governor said.

Governor Fashola, who said he had to shelve other pressing responsibilities to  attend the event, said, “We are here to celebrate the legacy of a vision 30 years  after and to honour the torch bearers who sustained that vision”, adding that this  has been done by presenting awards to former Governors of the State, Alhaji Lateef  Jakande, Rear Admiral Okhai Mike Akhigbe and Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu.

“I will like to say, very humbly but very proudly, that we have continued to sustain  the vision of Alhaji Jakande in many respects. As regards to this television  station, I say humbly but proudly that we have placed it on satellite TV and we have  enriched the programming of the Television Station”, the Governor said pointing out  that the programmes were designed to serve as platforms for interactions between the  Government and the governed at all levels.

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The Governor declared, “Television and the media generally are critical to the fight  against poverty because information is not only knowledge, it is also power; and  when people are informed through the media such as television, they are better  enlightened, they are better educated, they get better informed and they are freed  from the shackles of poverty”.

Thanking the former Governor Jakande and others who founded and sustained the  station as well as the management and staff of the television station, both retired  and serving for “keeping the torch thus far”, the Governor pledged, “I promise all  of you that we will keep this light aglow whatever it takes to do so”.

To the founder of the Station, Alhaji Jakande, Governor Fashola said, “Papa, I thank  God for you. Indeed, not many are blessed to be able to actualize their dreams. Some  whose dreams are actualized never lived to see them. We thank God for your life; God  prospered you to witness this”, pointing out that although the Federal Government  voted N2 million in 1982 to set up NTA 2 just to counter the LTV, it did not deter  the station from attaining the height it has reached today.

Earlier in his welcome address, the Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr.  Opeyemi Bamidele, expressed joy that the Lagos Television has manifested the  aspirations of its founding fathers by effectively maintaining a unique public  sphere for the government and people of Lagos.

He said through the foresight and unparalleled vision of the first civilian  administration in the State headed by Alhaji Lateef Jakande, a platform was created  through which the views of the Lagos people as well as the activities and programmes  of Government are seen and heard.

Paying glowing tribute to elder statesman, Alhaji Jakande, the Commissioner  declared, “We cannot forget in a hurry the opportunity given to Lagosians to  experience democracy in its full dimension”, pointing out that the legacy was borne  out of the fact that democracy could only thrive where there is effective  communication between the people and their representatives in government.

Also praising the contributions of the incumbent Governor of the State in moving the  television station to greater heights, the Commissioner said, “Without mincing  words, the administration of His Excellency, Mr. Babatunde Fashola (SAN), has  provided the impetus for dynamism in every aspect of governance in Lagos State. His  exemplary leadership style has propelled all agencies of government, LTV 8  inclusive, to greater heights and has made us all to imbibe the core values of  performance, quality assurance, integrity and excellence”.

“This has been the bedrock of the accelerated development and outstanding  achievements of the Lagos Television. Today, LTV has become a point of reference on  how a medium can attain professional integrity and credibility even within the  framework of the public service”, he said.

Highlight of the ceremony was the presentation of awards to the three former  Governors of the State, Alhaji Lateef Jakande, Vice Admiral Mike Akhigbe (rtd) and  Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu as well as to the incumbent Governor, past information  commissioners and other categories of officers, both retired and serving, who have  contributed to the development of the Television Station over the years.

Also present at the occasion were the Deputy Governor, Princess Sarah Adebisi Sosan,  the Deputy Speaker of the State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Bola Badmus Olujobi,  Commissioner of Police, Mr. Marvel Akpoyibo, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of  Information and Strategy, Mrs. Oluranti Odutola, Permanent Secretary Lagos  Television/Radio Services, Mr. Lekan Ogunbanwo, other senior officers who served the  Station in the past and top government functionaries.

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