The Centre for Social Justice, Equality and Transparency has accused foreign media outfits of promoting the activities of the Islamic State’s West Africa Province, ISWAP, in Nigeria.
The group made this disclosure in a report released on Thursday.
CESJET in the report presented by its Executive Director, Isaac Ikpa, revealed that in the course of their investigation, they were able to identify about 25 foreign media outlets covering North East Nigeria with the majority from France and some other French-speaking countries.
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According to the report, the organizations operate in such a way that does not augur well for the Nigerian troops.
The report further claimed that in most instances, these media outlets make unreasonable demands on the Nigerian authorities for clearance to go into the theatre of operations, and when such request is not granted, they resort to sending unfavourable reports to their home countries.
The reported below.
The activities of the Nigerian Army have come under the scrutiny of late with the news making the round how it is losing its soldiers daily to Boko Haram/ISWAP terrorist. In the course of the research work, it was discovered that a couple of issues were responsible for the negative reportage of the fight against terrorism in North East Nigeria.
The team of researchers was able to identify the influx of foreign media organizations in North East Nigeria under various nomenclatures and mostly attached to the myriads of international non-governmental organization supposedly carrying out humanitarian work in the region.
It was identified that the high presence of these organizations had constituted an encumbrance in the operations of the Nigerian Army in the fight against terrorism. Despite the challenge posed by these media organizations, the Nigerian Army has remained focused and determined to bring to an end the insurgency in North East Nigeria.
It was discovered that the Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen, Tukur Buratai routinely visits the troops unannounced for an on the spot assessment of the operational effectiveness the troops and to have first-hand information on the issues on the ground.
It was discovered that this routine visit is partly responsible for some of the successes recorded by the Nigerian Army as it has been identified as a morale booster for the troops. Our team of researchers identified that during such visits, the Chief of Army Staff ensures that he relates with the soldiers after been briefed by the commanders in an attempt to ensure that there is no communication gap between the commanders and the troops in the battlefront.
Our team of researchers was able to identify about 25 foreign media outlets covering North East Nigeria with the majority from France and some other French-speaking countries. These organizations operate in such a way that does not augur well for the Nigerian troops. In most instances, these media outlets make unreasonable demands on the Nigerian authorities for clearance to go into the theatre of operations, and when such request is not granted, they resort to sending unfavourable reports to their home countries.
It was also discovered that most of the news reportage on the international scene about the fight against terrorism in Nigeria is not a reflection of the facts in the ground, but a disjointed report that would further give a justification for their continued stay in Nigeria.
The team of researchers identified that most of the media organization work hand in hand with the foreign NGO’s to depict the picture of Boko Haram/ISWAP terrorist gaining more grounds. This was evident in the recent news that made the round that some Nigerian soldiers were killed by Boko Haram/ISWAP terrorist, a story that turned out untrue after a detailed investigation.
The team of researchers was able to identify that the activities of the foreign NGO’s are dependent on funding from international donor agencies and as such they must give a justification for their continued stay in Nigeria and more funding for their operations.
It was also discovered that what is happening in North East Nigeria is a racket between the foreign NGO’s and foreign media organizations. As a fact, they work hand in hand to ensure that their news reportage out of Nigeria is always in the negative. For example, whenever the Nigerian Army captures or kills Boko Haram/ISWAP terrorists in their large numbers, these media organizations would not give coverage to it despite been present. But when the reverse is the case, they give prominence to it.
These media organizations do carry out documentaries on the fight against terrorism, and in most cases, they set up situations that would fit their documentaries and broadcast same to the international audience depicting situations that in most cases are not a reflection of the reality ground but a make belief.
The Centre for Social Justice, Equality and Transparency (CESJET) after detail analysis of the reports turned in by the different group of researchers under various sub-themes concluded that the Nigerian Army has been highly professional in the fight against terrorism in North East Nigeria.
The Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen Tukur Buratai has provided exceptional leadership in the course of the fight against Boko Haram/ISWAP in North East Nigeria. This much was gathered from community leaders whose areas have been affected by the activities of Boko Haram/ISWAP.
The Centre for Social Justice, Equality and Transparency highly recommends that the influx of the foreign media organizations operating in North East Nigeria be checkmated as their activities have constituted a nuisance to the operations of the Nigerian Army.
It also recommends that these foreign media organizations should discontinue the way and manner they are reporting insurgency in Nigeria, which is not in the best interest of all concerned. If they cannot be objective in their reportage, they should leave Nigeria in peace.
The Centre for Social Justice, Equality and Transparency, having identified these foreign media organizations as promoting terrorism through their mostly inaccurate reportage should be cautioned and sanctioned moving forward by the relevant authorities in Nigeria.
The Centre for Social Justice, Equality and Transparency also recommends that a reporting template that would ensure objectivity be developed and given to the foreign media organizations operating in North East Nigeria, in an attempt to curtail some of their excesses in their news reportage.