A Non-governmental Organisation, Centre for Leadership Legacy International (Centre LLI) has frowned at the continuous abuse of media privileges by journalist.
The Group expressed concern in a statement signed by its Director of Publicity, Comrade Danny Onechon Benjamin Mantu, over the way and manner some journalists and media outfits go about their duties, citing the case of harassment and intimidation by one Mr Anyide, who claimed to be Punch Correspondent deployed to Minna, Niger State.
“In every sector, as it were, there are processes, procedures and protocols. It becomes more expedient, if it concerns media engagements. For instance, in media protocol, the issue of accreditation is taken seriously to avoid damage by charlatans and intruders.”
Centre LLI said the information available to it indicates that the former accredited Punch Correspondent in Niger State and Government House, left unannounced and since then, there has not been official communication from Punch as to the deployment a replacement.
“Suddenly, one Mr Ayinde, who claimed to be Punch Correspondent showed up without the usual procedures of submitting letter of deployment for necessary accreditation to grant him unhindered access to the Government House to cover functions.
“Punch is a reputable media organization that have remained a consistent leader in media industry that would not tolerate abuse of protocols.
“So, if Punch is sending a Correspondent, it should be through proper channels because it is a matter of security concern to allowed an acclaimed journalist, whose identity is yet to be verified into venue of government events.”
Centre LII investigation also revealed that the so called Punch Correspondent is found of loitering around the conference hall of Government House, even when there are no events that requires journalists attention.
It is in a bid to get Mr Ayinde to do the right thing by bringing letter of assignment for accreditation that he launched media war on the Chief Press Secretary to the Niger State Governor, Mary Noel-Berje, whose only crime is asking Mr Ayinde to produce his letter of assignment from Punch newspaper.
Among the latest of his attacks on the CPS was a false claim in a story titled, “Power hungry CPS to Niger State Governor orders arrest of Punch Correspondent”, published in Punch and The Eagle Online.
Not done, Mr Ayinde took his blackmail further with a press statement by a so called Media Right Agenda (MRA) for Governor Abubakar Sani Bello to relieve his CPS of her appointment, citing unconstitutional act. If one may ask, at what point has asking an acclaimed Correspondent to get letter of credence from his organization become an unconstitutional act.
Let it be known that no amount of intimidation or blackmail can cow right thinking people from doing the right things.