The Minister of Information in Nigeria, Mr Labaran Maku has advised media professionals to stand up against terrorism by sensitising citizens on the ills and negative effects of terrorism.
The Minister gave the advice on Friday at the 8th Ordinary Congress of the West Africa Journalists Association (WAJA) holding in Abuja.
At the opening session of the congress Mr Maku urged media professionals to support their government in the fight against terrorism by shunning acts capable of promoting hate and divisive tendencies.
The President of the WAJA, Mr Mohammed Garba, told the gathering that the association had been able to overcome some of the challenges facing media professionals in West Africa.
Mr Garba, who is also the leader of the Nigerian Union of Journalists, said the association was concerned about insecurity and other issues affecting journalism practice in the sub-region.
“We are concerned about the growing cases of insecurity and also those challenges that are hampering the smooth journalism practice in West Africa.
“The issue of media freedom in the sub-region will also feature prominently in our discussions at the congress,” he said.
The congress will dwell extensively on the welfare of journalists and security, which the president of the association said were essential to effective reportage.
Over 30 delegates and resource persons are attending the congress, with the theme, `Strengthening media for peace, security and democratic governance in West Africa’, holding between April 25 and 26.
Representatives of UNICEF, the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ), ECOWAS and African Capacity Building Foundation (ACBF) amongst others will be addressing the congress.