NPAN asks Nigeria Media to set up Ombudsman Mechanism
The Executive Council of the Newspaper Proprietors’ Association of Nigeria (NPAN) has rejected suggestions or plans by the Federal Government to regulate the media under any guise.
At a meeting held last Tuesday at NPAN Secretariat in Maryland, Ikeja, Lagos, the newspaper proprietors deliberated on the regulatory framework for media operatives within its member-organisations and gave a November 1, 2021 deadline for each member to empanel an Internal Ombudsman mechanism.
Ombudsman are editorial standards editors work to maintain ethical practice in their newsrooms.
In a communique issued at the end of the meeting and signed by the President of NPAN, Kabiru Yusuf, the body said the media would co-regulate itself, rather than being regulated by the government. It also said steps were being quickened to empanel at the industry level, a workable, quick and responsive system to address public complaints and concerns on missteps by the media and its operatives.
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“We deliberated on the regulatory framework for media operatives within the respective member-organisations and the industry at large and gave a November 1, 2021, deadline for each member to empanel an internal Ombudsman mechanism. This is even as steps are being quickened to empanel at the industry level, a workable, quick and responsive system to address public complaints and concerns on mis-steps by the media and its operatives.
“The internal Ombudsman is to ensure that the news organisation keeps to the canons of journalism practice and the code of ethics, to mediate in conflicts stemming from internal or external pressures, to keep news organisation honest and accountable to the public for news reported and to ensure that the public’s right to know is protected. The internal Ombudsman in discharging its responsibilities is expected to work with the Nigeria Union Of Journalists (NUJ) Code of Ethics, the canons of journalism practice as encapsulated in Fairness, Objectivity, Balance, Accuracy and Completeness (FOBAC). The Council resolved to unfold soon, a global Ombudsman structure for the entire industry and the modalities for same. It reaffirms its commitment to responsible journalism, at all times.”