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Apr 21, 2018


The hierarchy of the Catholic Church has been admonished to adopt a collaborative synergy for mobilizing the faithful of the Church for more and effective participation in the communication apostolate of the Church in the country.

The call was made by Chief Kierian Umeayo in his paper titled: A New Media and National Security, delivered at the eight Regional Conference of the Catholic Media Practitioners Association of Nigeria (CAMPAN), Northern Region chapter; held recently at St Theresa’s Catholic Church, Madalla, Niger State.

According to the lecturer, the Church has a good numerical strength enough to mobilize adequate fund to establish and fund effective communication and information organs that can help educate the people on how to use all organs of communication, especially the new media for national security, justice, peace and development.

Chief Umeayo, who presented the lead paper at the conference noted that “the major criticisms levelled against the Nigerian media include irresponsible, reckless and sensational nature of reports, plus hate and abusive words used by Nigerians on new media age”.

Pointing out that the users of the social media are of the 18 to 34 years age bracket, Chief Umeayo noted that: “these platforms for information gathering and dissemination when appropriately applied could be tool for national security but socio-economic and political events in Nigeria have forced users of modern media to channel their energy towards making comments that can destroy the entire fabric of the Nigerian society.”

He continued: “The use of social media can indeed contribute considerably to rapid information sharing within government agencies, ministries and can increase inter constitutional communication flow.” He added: “Social media can guarantee an effective information and content interchange among offices of the same agency, churches in different dioceses, schools, public and private organizations.”

The guest lecturer spoke extensively on main characteristics that define social media, demographic facts about social media; conceptual framework of national security and the problems of the country that prompt negative use of the social media. He urged Catholic media practitioners to avoid negative postings on the internet stressing that these can trigger off wanton destruction of social, economic and political fabrics of Nigeria.

Addressing the issue of Citizen Journalism and Its Challenges to National Security; Rev. Sr. Theresa Tanko of the Centre for the Study of African Culture and Communication (CESACC), Catholic Institute of West Africa (CIWA), Port Harcourt, Rivers State; in her presentation x-rayed the advantages and disadvantages of citizen journalism as an arm of the new media age, urging that every effort should be geared at using it positively for national security, peace, justice and development.

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