Most Rev. Felix Ajakaye, the Catholic Bishop of Ekiti, on Sunday, urged media practitioners to shun armchair journalism so as not to plunge the country into more crisis.
The Bishop also condemned what he called “political idolatry”, where politicians jump from one political party to the other aimlessly or for pecuniary reasons, rather than in national interest.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Ajakaye gave the advice at a special mass held at St. Patrick’s Catholic Cathedral, Ado-Ekiti, to mark the 55th World Communication Day.
The Bishop, who is also a journalist, commended media practitioners for their efforts, but urged them not to be complacent in protecting the integrity of the profession.
“As journalists, we need to practice journalism as media of integrity and credibility.
“There must not be room for armchair Journalism, where a journalist bases his report or presentation on mere speculation without making efforts to go thorough necessary investigation.
“Armchair journalism portends danger for us as a nation. Fake news is destructive and divisive. It is sensational and does not promote scholarship, it also does not promote authentic communication.
“The hallmark of journalism profession is investigative journalism which is all about research, and positive oriented.
“It demands patience, sacrifice, commitment and will power, which is focused on justice, peace, unity, harmony, growth and development”, he said.
According to Bishop Ajakaye, investigative journalism should be promoted in any sane society, saying a society without rules or which failed to uphold justice for peace and development, would always have problems.
He said that the Catholic Pontiff, Pope Francis, has always wished that the term, “communicators” would have positive impact on citizens’ daily relationship with one another.
The Bishop called on President Muhammadu Buhari to regularly address the nation on the various challenges confronting it and efforts being made to tackle them.
He stressed that current happenings in the country deserved urgent solutions that would not be earned through delegation of responsibilities.
“What is happening in Nigeria now calls for concerns, most especially the issues of kidnapping, killings and banditry among others, and I like to see the President himself in action, not by proxy”, the Bishop said