In reaction to recent clamors for close censorship of the social media in Nigeria, the Director General, National Orientation Agency (NOA), has described the social media as complementary to the conventional media, stressing that both must be allowed to co-exist for a robust information spectrum in Nigeria.
Abari stated this position while speaking to newsmen at the 46th National Council on Information (NCI) in Asaba, Delta State. He said the contributions of the social media was essential to the achievement of government’s information objectives, in line with the “Change Begins with Me” campaign, noting however, the need for a more responsible use of social media space by the public.
He explained that the “Change Begins with Me” campaign was a clarion call on Nigerians to personally imbibe the change mantra as a self-policy, both in government business and in private life as a combined top-bottom and bottom-top approach to national reorientation.
On the current economic recession, Abari said “Recession is not a death sentence. However, it requires concerted effort by all Nigerians for us to exit this experience”. He said government, on its part, is blocking leakages of resources while appealing to Nigerians for a positive change of attitude toward appreciating the present economic realities and curbing wastages.
Earlier, the NCI Chairman and Honourable Minister of Information, Alhaji Lai Mohammed had in his Keynote Address at the event observed that the democratization of information technology presents both new opportunities and new challenges, such as the deliberate misinformation of the unsuspecting public by some social media playerd. He described as unfounded, the social media reports that the launch of the “Change Begins with Me” campaign cost N3.4 bn, pointing out that the entire 2016 capital budget of the Federal Ministry of Information was less than N2bn. He therefore urged the conventional media to always verify before adopting contents originating from the social media