Nigerian Government solicits support of indigenous publishers

Solomon Chung, Lagos

The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed has called on indigenous newspapers to collaborate with the federal government to bring the grassroots people on board in the area of information dissemination and awareness creation.

He said most members of the grassroots are being left behind in the area of information dissemination in respect of government policies and programmes.

He made this known when he visited two indigenous newspaper publications in Lagos, South West Nigeria in continuation of his stakeholders’ engagement for the actualisation of the Ministry’s mandate.

At the first point of call, which was Iroyin Owuro, he told the management that the publication is a veritable platform to reach out to the grassroots.

“Your publication should provide the missing link for those people that are left behind .We’ll support you as a government. Before now, government patronage to such indigenous publications was poor but that would change now. We’ll patronise you.”

Government is doing a lot, and government is about security and welfare we but if they don’t understand why it is so, it creates some sort of disconnect,” he stated.

At the second publishing house of Alaroye, the Minister said the grassroots have not been properly informed as they should.

“The elites are the ones dominating the media space. Their opinion sets agenda even if it is not genuine, while the critical mass is left behind. Use your powerful platform to change that,” the Minister added.

He said the government over time neglected the indigenous publications, which is a platform that would reach millions of people with real impact.

Stronger Relationship

Mohammed also called for the need to build a stronger relationship between the government and the people at the grassroots.

He further stated that the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari has exhibited enough political will in the fight against corruption.

He said such will and determination to fight graft to a standstill has been lacking from the country’s recent political leadership. He further advised Nigerians to be more inquisitive and also be stakeholders in the fight.