Problems and Prospects of Media Management in Nigeria.
In any organized society there is an organized body constituted to direct the affairs of such society. The citizens of this society are empowered to call off any member of the organized body, in this case the government who failed to live up to expectations.
Taking Nigerian nation as a case study, being an organized society has its government with its activities spelt out in the Nigerian constitution. These public office holders held the said office with the consent of the citizens who elected them into these offices.
The government then is duty bound to protect lives and properties of the citizens, as well as provides them with the basic amenities that sustains life.
Be that as it may, there was a desire to check mate the activities of this government in order to ensure that they obliged to its role of caring for the welfare of its citizens hence, birth the media.
The media was to however, was to check mate to activities of the government and the governed through gathering information and disseminate same through electronic (broadcasting) or newspapers and magazines (print) media for the purpose of engendering the socio-economic condition of the state and its people.
Therefore, the purpose of the media was to establish a means by which the activities and government could be published, as well as create cultural, social and political awareness among the people and the generality of the populace.
Hence, we can deduce that media is a crucial and important instrument in organizing socity and it’s also an instrument of reforms. Taking a critical look at the role played by media one will agree that it was media that engineered the achievement of Nigerian independence.
It spurred Nigerian founding fathers to fight for independence. They were so inpired by the information conveyed by the media. Our forebears dreams aspirations were realized courtesy of the media, unlike other African countries that earned freedom through the barrels of gun.
Angola and. Mozambique were such countries among others. Nigerian nationalists were so informed that they could not wait to see a free Nigeria. It goes to say that media can set agenda for society’s reforms through its role of educating and enlightening the society
However, inspire of media’s reformative role, the imperative of media management has posed grave concern to a democratic society like Nigeria. Media management is all about directing the affairs of media outfit with a view to meet the organization goal.
It is the process by which the Editor-in-chief coordinate the entire activities of planning, organizing, directing, and as well controlled the media activities so as achieve the object of media outfit. He is responsible for day to day management of news activities in the news room and all the activities as assigned to his office.
Sadly media today has turned into sycophantic political heavyweight megaphone. Unfortunately. it’s the same media that is acting slavishly forgetting that it was in the vanguard of Nigerian struggle for independence. It has lost the freedom of saying the truth and standing on the part of justice.
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Today media is engulfed with intrigue of the ruling class leading to noncompliance to the ethics of the profession and public deuru. What strangest!
External detractors have continued to play foul against media’s best intentions. On-time, ruling class have interfere with media practice deciding on which news item to be carried and which one not to carry. Moneybags politicians have brought Nigerian media. Investigative journalism has become a thing of the past.
In a bit to get favour from politicians balance reportage is abandoned, journalists themselves are threatened and can even be sued should they report anything against the heavy political weight, and you wonder where our society is heading to. Some of the business tycoons in the society are not helping matters as some of the strong media houses are owned by them. Reason is obvious as politicians rely on them for election sponsorship as they also rely on politicians in looting state treasury once politicians enters public office.
Other media outfits are owned by some fellow seeking favour from government, and any media house that attempt to dare politicians can at any point in time close down thereby, disallowing freedom of information. With such measure of control by money bad individuals, the aim of achieving objective reportage will be defeated
Another area of concern is the poor performance of the media practitioners. They adopted improper management techniques and expect quality delivery, besides other issues hindering the smooth and effective performance of the media practitioners. Nigeria as a developing nation whose democracy is in process deserves a well structured and effective media to shape its value and governance as it check mate the activities government and Nigerian citizens
Poor quality delivery in media practice has raised the question as to whether it is as result of employing unqualified and inexperienced personals or lack of modern equipment because of lack of funds? The answer is both, given personals drift occasion by poor and unattractive condition for service.
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The Media, popularly referred to as the Fourth Estate of the Realm holds a bright future for this nation recounting on its role which Nigerian independence rode on. Hence, there is need for media management strata to be overhauled. There should be a vigorous campaign and sensitization awareness for members of the media profession by the Nigerian Union of Journalists (NUJ) with a view to include in them the ethics the profession, as training and retraining of the practitioners for quality delivery.
Media practitioners should insist on media autonomy. This will engender freedom of information, discourage politicians from interfering on the activities of media outfits in the nation. I will also suggest for an inducement of attractive service condition for practicing journalists.
Without media autonomy, journalists will not have the power to base their decision as to what is best under a given situation. Let journalists be allowed to do their work and make autonomous decision in matters within their professional competence.
To this end the issue of some politicians exerting pressure on Nigerian media to disseminate information they preferred and not what the members of the public want to hear will be a thing of the past.
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