Edo State Deputy Governor, Philip Shaibu, has instituted three annual awards for practising journalists in the state to encourage excellence and professionalism.
The awards, Best Investigative Journalist of the Year, Best Reporter of the Year, and Best Journalist of the Year, each has a prize of ₦500,000 and a trophy.
The deputy governor, who announced this during his annual get together with the media in the state, said the awards would be presented at next year’s edition of media hosting in December 2022.
He said but for journalists who alerted that he and other persons were still left behind in Gashua Prison after the military government claimed to have freed all detainees, he would not have been alive to become deputy governor.
“As deputy governor today, it’s the media who insisted some of us were still being detained. If not for the journalist who insisted, we would have been forgotten”, he said.
Shaibu explained that the annual hosting of journalists, for him, was “about sharing, and for you to recognise your role”, adding that democracy without the media is no democracy.
“The media is the catalyst; the media mirrors the society. Journalists need to balance their reports”, Shaibu stressed. He urged the media practitioners to see government as partners in progress.
Earlier, newly elected Chairman of the Edo State Council of the Nigeria Union of Journalists, Festus Alenkhe, called on the state government to partner with journalists by investing in the State Council.
Alenkhe also solicited the assistance of the government in powering the state secretariat of the NUJ from its Ossiomo Power Station, a request that was later in the day granted.
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