• ‘Who is going to tell the story of North East?

    In the recently concluded ‘communicators conference’ convened by the Presidential Initiative on North East, a very challenging question was raised by Sani Zorro: ‘who is going to tell the story of North East?’ In the two-day workshop organised by the 7 Division Nigerian Army in conjunction with Nigerian Union of Journalists, Borno state chapter, another question was raised: ‘why does the Nigerian military prefer to allow and provide security to foreign journalists to cover (special) stories on Boko Haram than indigenous journalists?’ While these questions were raised, another important one that arises—and not taken into account is: what efforts do the people of North East make about taking charge of the narratives and information coming out from their region in the last seven years or so?

    These questions are very timely and invoke the thought of what Sir Abubakar Tafawa Balewa meant when Gaskiya Tafi Kwabo, the first newspaper to be established in the Northern Nigeria was launched: ‘[that] as a people... if we don’t blow our trumpet, who do you expect to blow it for us?’ Stories can be told by anyone no doubt, but indeed their quality, depth and factuality is determined by certain relativities. For instance, an account given by a toddler is likelier to be true than those of an adult. No doubt, the commentary on Boko Haram has been commandeered by foreign media either as a result of the preferential treatment given to them by authorities concerned or of failure from the part of our local media to live up to their primary responsibility and as such, there is still a very big gap—of, by far, the most important aspect: the ‘victims’ account’. It is the reason why even those who are originally from the North East but live outside the region appear to live in worlds apart with its residents. As a result of inadequate reportage where in-depth information is needed, and exaggeration where the truth is concerned, visitors to North East find the state of things radically different from what they know on the spot of arrival.

Friday, October 7, 2016 9:16 AM

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  • Just get it right! -Mustapha Modu Bama


    Just get it right
    By Mustapha Modu Bama | October 2, 2016, 12:00 pm

    I write with high sense of joy to congratulate the editorial board of Yerwa Express News and everyone involved in taking this giant stride to be in the midst of thousands in the business of information management and dissemination at a time people of Borno and beyond need it the most. Being the first of its kind in the history of Yerwa (Maiduguri) and the entire north-eastern states, if I have not mistaken, Yerwa Express News should emulate the existing prominent newspaper organisations in the quest of disseminating authentic, reliable and timely news stories in and around Borno state.

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