The Minister of the Federal Capital Authority (FCT) Mallam Muhammad Bello has charged journalists playing their trade in the nation’s capital to expose people working against the capital’s progress.
Bello gave the charge on Thursday during the official commissioning of the newly constructed FCT NUJ Council Secretariat Utako, Abuja.
He said his administration appreciates the role of the FCT media in keeping the residents informed as well as holding government to account on its responsibilities to the people.
“The media has a huge role to play through diligent reportage of events and truly being the watchdog of society. It is essential that you dig deep to expose negative elements working against our collector be efforts of building not just the FCT but indeed, the Nigeria of our dreams,” he said.
In his welcome address, the NUJ chairman Mr. Emmanuel Ogbeche who revealed that the building project started 28 years ago, noted that the completion was informed by the FCT minister’s policy of seeing government as a continuum.
Ogbeche who harped on the challenges facing journalists in the FCT, called on the minister to approve a monthly grant for the council to meets its financial needs.
“Hon. Minister, this council is not without challenges, one of which is funding. It is no longer secret that journalists are mistreated by the society it serves and protects.
“While we appreciate the paucity of funds in the FCTA and in general, we appeal that the NUJ be considered for a monthly grant as is done for the National Council of Women Society and other similar bodies. This will go a long way in enabling the council meet up with some of its obligations,” he said.