Beware of North-East, Defence Headquarters warns journalists, media organisations
Posted by News Express | 15 September 2016 | 1,451 times
The Defence Headquarters has warned journalists and media organisations against embarking on coverage of the North-East region, which is still under security watch, without due authorisation from the military authorities.
The practice, according to the Acting Director of Defence Information, Brigadier General Rabe Abubakar, is not only capable of jeopardising the success of the on-going military operations in the area but also poses grave concern to the safety of the journalists concerned.
Abubakar advised that much as the military is not trying to gag the media from carrying out their legitimate duties, permission should be sought from the Armed Forces before embarking on such assignments. This, he said, will enable adequate security to be provided for such journalists by the military.
He added that even though Boko Haram has been substantially decimated, any roving journalist “could be a target of unsuspecting fleeing Boko Haram member and this will not be in the best interest of media organisations and the nation at large.”
The Defence Headquarters advised that any journalist who wishes to cover conflict areas should seek permission from the military hierarchy so that adequate security arrangements could be provided by the troops on the ground, emphasising that “it is also the responsibility of the military to safeguard the lives and property of the Nigerian citizenry including law abiding journalists in the theatre of operation and in Nigeria in general.”