Lai Mohammed meets heads of NTA, NOA, FRCN, others, blast them over inefficiency

Newly appointed Minister of Information, Lai Mohammed today met with various heads of parastatals in the Ministry of Information. At the meeting, Lai Mohammed blasted them over what he said was their lack of efficiency in their discharge of duties. He said politicizing of issues by the government agencies in the ministry has led to their unprofessional practice in recent times. He said

"Let me start with the Federal
Government- owned media
organizations, the NTA, FRCN and NAN.
Why have you all chosen to play second
fiddle in the country's media landscape?
I ask because the NTA and FRCN of
yesterday is not the same as what we
have today. Whereas most broadcast
journalists of note in our country today
passed through the NTA and the FRCN,
there is no denying the fact that the
private radio and TV stations are doing
much better, at least going by the fact
that most Nigerians prefer them to the
public broadcasters. Indeed, most
Nigerians find the private broadcasters
more credible. The reason for this is not
farfetched. First, the public broadcasters
have thrown professionalism to the wind
while also showing total disregard for
editorial independence. They have
mortgaged their credibility on the altar
of political correctness. Yet, these
Federal Government-owned media
establishments are endowed with
highly-trained and well-qualified
personnel, better infrastructure and a
wide reach. It is interesting to note that
these government-owned media
organizations complain of financial woes,
forgetting that there is a link between
credibility and profitability. Advertisers
will surely flock to more credible media
organizations, and of course it is also
true that content drives advertisement.
The same law of diminishing returns
also apply to NAN, which was once the
leading national news agency in the
whole of Africa, boasting of the best
professionals in the news business.
Today, the agency is punching far below
its weight, despite its presence in all the
states of the Federation. We intend to
provide leadership for the Federal
Government-owned media organizations
in a manner that will make them to
become the first source of information,
so that they can more effectively
function as a vehicle for the change
mantra of the Buhari Administration,
and also regain their lost glory. The combined reach of the NTA, FRCN and NAN, if effectively utilized, will facilitate the success of the change campaign. But
they must first enhance their own credibility, because no credibility- deficient news organization can successfully propagate the message of change. At this juncture, ladies and gentlemen, let me assure Nigerians that under this Administration, no Federal
Government-owned media organization will deny the opposition the opportunity to air their views. It is true that while we were in opposition, we were treated as outcasts by these public broadcasters.

They denied us the use of their platforms, they rejected our adverts and even made themselves available for the most abhorrent hate campaign ever in
the history of electioneering campaign in our country. But in an era of change, which is our mantra, that cannot and will not continue. Opposition members are
Nigerians, just like members of the ruling party. Even the ruling party will benefit when the opposition is allowed to air their views freely, because you learn more from people who disagree with you. Therefore, let the ruling party and the opposition air their ideas and letthe people, who wield the ultimate power, decide at the end of the day"he said

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