The Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria, (HURIWA) has faulted the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) directive to broadcasting organizations on the reporting of bandits and other criminals’ activities in the country.
NBC had recently ordered the country’s broadcasters to stop reporting the activities of bandits, terrorists, and kidnappers.
However, in a statement issued on Sunday by its National Coordinator, Emmanuel Onwubiko, and the National Media Affairs, Miss Zainab Yusuf, HURIWA described the directive as a ploy to suppress press freedom in the country.
The body also implored the management of the NBC to focus on its core mandate instead of interfering in the broadcasters’ activities.
The statement read: “Media freedom otherwise known as freedom of expression is a foundation for many other rights and is a cornerstone for strengthening the principle and practice of constitutional democracy.
“Those who should know have emphatically stated that Freedom of expression is a human right and forms Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
“Truly and indeed, freedom of expression is not an absolute right: it does not protect hate speech or incitement to violence which most media houses are aware of and as professionals have always adhered to.”
HURIWA also asked the broadcasters to ignore the NBC unconstitutional directive or risk losing their followership.
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