Journalists have been tasked to promote peace journalism as a veritable tool for societal development especially against the backdrop of rising conflict in sub Saharan Africa.
The call was stressed during a two day workshop organized by United State’s Embassy in collaboration with American University of Nigeria Yola that saw the attendance of Journalists from all parts of Nigeria.
In her opening remark, the President of American University of Nigeria Mergee Ensign noted that the workshop was organized to equip journalists with the techniques of peace journalism for harmony and enduring development to prevail in societies.
She expressed concern over the high number of out of school children noting that Nigeria has the largest number of out of school children in the world adding that such situation was unacceptable.
She noted in response to the challenge, the American University of Nigeria (AUN) with the US Agency for International Development (USAID) has launched a literacy programme tagged Technology Enhanced Learning for All (TELA).
Ensign noted that the programme has enrolled 22,000 vulnerable out of school children in order to safeguard their future and improve literacy and numeracy in the state.
She noted that the children are equipped with radio sets and computer tablets for the learning process.
Also in his remark Mr Laurence Socha of US Embassy Abuja noted that the workshop was organized to equip journalist with the techniques of peace reportage in order to promote harmony in the country.
He noted that in view of the rapid development of information technology which makes everyone to have access to information sharing, the need to train mainstream journalists on the need to spread correct report was necessary as their role was to inform not to inflame.
Veteran Journalists including Professor of Journalism, Judith Watloff, Rakiya Usman and Professor Jackob Udo Udo Jacob serves as resource persons in which Principles of Peace Journalism, ethics and coverage of violence, sensitive interview techniques, storytelling were discussed