Conflict resolution: Centre tasks Journalists on peaceful coexistence

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Journalists have been advised not to take sides in reporting religious or ethnic crises but to promote peace and harmony among different groups.
A Non-Governmental Organisation, Interfaith Mediation Centre, Kaduna, gave the advice in Kaduna on Tuesday at a one day sensitization workshop on Cultural and Religious Pluralism for Media Practitioners in Kaduna.
Participants in the workshop ‎were selected from 18 media organisations across the state.
The Coordinator, Peace Builders Nigeria, Abdulfatah Adekunle, said that the peace and stability of Nigeria lay in the hands of journalists, who were expected to promote peaceful coexistence among the people.
He identified culture, faith and media as basis of unrest and violence in the country and urged journalists to stop promoting hatred on the basis of religion or tribe.
Adekunle urged journalists to pay more attention to promoting peace, rather than divide the society along religious or ethnic lines.
Pastor Joshua Pyam, Director, Monitoring and Evaluation of the centre, said the social media was being used to promote hatred, especially during crises.
He decried the level of unethical journalism practice in Nigeria, saying that journalists should abide by the ethics of their profession in managing conflict.
Also, Malam Mohammed Sufi, Director, Research and Documentation of the centre, said the role of the media was important in conflict management.
He stressed the importance of language, saying it was very powerful in conflict situations.
“We are going to be accountable and responsible for whatever we do.
“Media practitioners are teachers and agents of socialisation even the children can learn from what they see in the media.
“Media should focus more on our similarities and not on our differences, as our rulers are using this to divide us,’’ he advised. (NAN)

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