By Victoria Nnakaike, Lokoja
As the governorship election in Kogi State enters fast countdown, journalists reporting the process have been cautioned against political actors who use anybody to destroy the process.
The warning came from number journalist in Nigeria, the National President of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Comrade Chris Isiguzo.
Isiguzo also warned politicians against using journalists to whip up parochial sentiment.
Isiguzo gave the caution at the grand finale of the 2023 Press Week of the Kogi Council of the Union held in Lokoja on Wednesday. He added that journalists should be wary of reporting such actors so as not to overheat the polity.
He pointed out that discerning journalists would be able to separate evil politicians from genuine ones. “Most of those in this category are pretenders and not contenders in the forthcoming November 11 governorship election in the state.”
Isiguzo equally described the forthcoming Kogi governorship election as one that would enthrone a leader that would govern the whole state and not a section of the State.
He said this was the reason promoting sectional interests would not do the state any good.
Kogi State has however practiced rotational governorship for decades along the three senatorial zones that capture the major ethnic nationalities in the state.
Kogi was carved out of two middlebelt states of Benue and Kwara, thus those that came from Benue rotate with those that came from Kwara, thus creating some stability.
Isiguzo however cautioned journalists to be professional and unbiased in the reporting of the governorship election, pointing out that the Kogi election was about the people and not a section.
Isiguzo also commended the unwavering dedication and professionalism that defines the journalism profession in the State and congratulated the Kogi State Council for orchestrating an exceptional Press Week.
On the presentation of book “Media Development in Kogi State, 1999 –2023”, Isiguzo praised the Kogi NUJ for its commitment to promoting excellence, fostering growth, and upholding the highest standards of journalism. He described the launch of the book as a remarkable literary endeavour that captures the evolution of media in the state over 24 years.
He equally described the book as a transformation of media from traditional platforms to the dynamic and interconnected digital landscape of the State, adding that the book is a collective wisdom, insights, and experience of generations of journalists who have tirelessly pursued the truth, challenged societal norms and strived for more transparent and accountable society.
He urged the media in Kogi State to recommit themselves to the noble principles of journalism, embrace the spirit of inquiry, pursuit of truth, and the relentless quest for transparency and accountability.
Isiguzo also lauded the leadership of Adeiza Momoh Jimoh as chairman of the Kogi State Council, saying he has demonstrated exceptional commitment and visionary strides in repositioning the council by igniting a new era of progress and unity.