The Director General of the Progressives Governors Forum, PGF, Mr.
Salihu Lukman says One of the strategies essential to successfully fight insecurity in Nigeria is to reform management and dissemination of information to the public on security.
Lukman explained that because there is no strategy to give the public verifiable information about the efforts being made to fighting bandits in the country, people are left to assimilate and believe speculations, Propaganda messages and editorial opinions from unofficial sources.
The PGF DG added that failure of the All Progressives Congress, APC led government to take such a step will weaken its election viability in 2021.
“Unless and until, APC, both as a party and government, can roll out initiatives to direct public debates in the country based on application of contemporary knowledge about existing problems, highly negative interpretation of government initiatives or so-called lack of it will continue to drive public conversation in the country.
“The current structure of information management is part of the problem and must change if APC and its government is to effectively mobilise Nigerians to support initiatives to resolve national security challenges.
Failure to recognise this may continue to damage the electoral prospect of APC,“ he said.
The PGF DG who made a reference to a publication on Saturday, October 23, 2021, by the Economist magazine of London said the Nigerian government’s neglect of controlling the public narrative on insecurity led to such “damning report” by a foreign media organisation.
On the way forward, Mr.
Lukman said reports on insecurity by media Houses should conform to a minimum standard and some government organisations need to work together to change the public’s mindset.
“Under the new regime of problem-solving information management, can APC and its governments develop a new reporting template, which ensures that reports of events by all credible media platforms conform to some minimum verifiable standards? Can the new regime of problem-solving information management seek to strengthen national compliance to existing statutory provisions in the country?
“Without doubt there exist many initiatives driven by some of the existing established structures of government, which needs to be mainstreamed as part of the new problem-solving information management.
The campaign by National Orientation Agency, for instance, of change begins with me is one of such initiatives.
Perhaps, it needs to be further strengthened and improved such that it highlights the new secure Nigeria being envisioned.
“How can the change begin with me campaign, also for instance, fit into the strategy of mobilising Nigerians to support the fight to end insecurity in the country, in all its ramification? To achieve that will require some radical reforms of many of the structures of government facilitating the process of information management, including the National Orientation Agency.
“In addition, government broadcast stations such as Nigerian Television Authority (NTA), Federal Radio Corporation of Nigeria (FRCN), Voice of Nigeria (VON) and News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), among other, should be encouraged to create customised programmes, which should seek to specifically facilitate interface between government officials and citizens involved in the field of enquiry about contemporary challenges?” He said.
PGF boss calls for information management reform