President Muhammadu Buhari
…Demands PPE, Palliative to stay alive to inform Nigerians
By Bashir Bello
As the World Press Day is celebrated across the globe, the leadership of Correspondents’ Chapel, Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Kano state branch, has joined the millions of journalists to commemorate the day by calling on the Federal government to urgently tackle the coronavirus pandemic situation in Kano State before it worsens and gets out of hand.
This was also as it called on the government to provide Personal Protection Equipments, PPEs and palliative measures for the working journalists to stay safe and alive in order to carry out it responsibilities of informing and educating the public on the waves of the deadly disease.
The Chairman, Ibrahim Garba Shuaibu made the call in a statement to commemorate the day which has its theme as: “Journalism without Fear or Favour,” in the state.
According to Shuaibu, “No gainsaying the fact that Kano is in the eyes of the storm as long as the COVID-19 pandemic continue to ravage Nigeria.
“We are also of the candid opinion that the Federal Government should immediately commence its blueprints on the best way to tackle the Kano COVID-19 situation before it gets out of hand, just as we appeal to the conscience of development partners, donor agencies and good spirited individuals to show compassion to the Government and good people of Kano state at this critical time.
“As we commend the efforts made so far by Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje’s administration in tackling the spread of the Virus, we demand for renewed cooperation with working journalists in the state to achieve desired results.
“As major stakeholders in the fight against COVID-19, we reiterate our resolve and commitment to dispense our professional energy into the synergized mission to stamp out the dreaded Corona Virus from the face of this earth, through the promotion of free and responsible press.
“We also throw our weight to several calls from different quarters for journalists to be provided with Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) and Palliatives to enable us stay safe and alive to inform and educate the public on the waves of the Corona Virus which has distorted history and events across the world.
“Even with the barrier created by the COVID-19 pandemic, we as a body recognize the fact that the World Press Freedom Day was proclaimed by the United Nations General Assembly in December 1993, following the recommendation of UNESCO’s General Conference. Since then, 3 May, the anniversary of the Declaration of Windhoek is celebrated worldwide as World Press Freedom Day.
“It is also our view that May 3 acts as a reminder to governments of the need to respect their commitment to press freedom. It is also a day of reflection among media professionals about issues of press freedom and professional ethics.
“Once again, we say congratulations to all members of the Fourth Estate of the Realm as we celebrate today in sober reflection. We salute the dedication, sacrifice and devotion of health workers who are on the front line of the fight against COVID-19. As we pray for the quick recovery of those at Isolation Centres, we also supplicate for the repose of the souls of the dead.
“Most importantly, we advise the public to strictly abide by all protocols of fighting and preventing COVID-19. Stay home, stay safe. Wash your hands, sanitize your hands. Avoid crowd, maintain social distancing. Respect the lockdown order. COVID-19 is real,” Shuaibu however stated.