The Nigerian Media, as it marks today, February 14 as National Media Peace Day, have called on all stakeholders to work toward peace before, during and after the elections, even as Nigerians prepare to go to the polls on Saturday, February 16 to elect new leaders.
Journalists from the print, broadcast, and digital media assembled in Abuja to examine events leading to Saturday’s exercise and called for caution and statesmanship on the part of all stakeholders to ensure a violence-free, credible, fair and acceptable exercise.
They declared that all stakeholders should “think Nigeria, think peace’’, which is the theme fir the Peace Day celebration.
The group said in a statement signed by Alli Hakeem-Media practitioner, Former Editor-in-Chief, NAN, and Olubukola Ademola-Adelehin, Senior Program and Policy Analyst, Search for Common Ground, said it was incumbent on all stakeholders to toe the path of peace as there could be no development without peace.
The journalists particularly enjoined voters not to sell their votes as that was the power at their disposal to choose who leads them and advised that they should equally shun violence during the exercise stressing that the election of any candidate was not worth the blood of a voter.
They urged the Independent National Electoral Commission to play by the rules and make votes to count as all eyes are currently on Nigeria globally.
The media practitioners also enjoined political parties and politicians to either accept election results peacefully or contest same at the law courts as the Electoral Law prescribes.
They admonished media practitioners to shun fake news, unfounded rumours and innuendoes and put Nigeria first in their reportage.
Security operatives were also enjoined to be apolitical during and after the exercise and ensure protection for all.