Media to Inaugurate Complaints Commission Tomorrow

James Emejo in Abuja

The Nigerian media will tomorrow inaugurate the board of the National Media Complaints Commission (NMCC) as part of the efforts to strengthen public confidence in the media as a credible barometer of public opinion.

The nine-member board of the NMCC is also known as the National Ombudsman.
The information was disclosed in a statement dated March 31 and signed by the President of Nigeria Press Organisation (NPO) and Newspaper Proprietors’ Association of Nigeria (NPAN), Kabiru Yusuf.

The nine-member board will act as the National Ombudsman and will be drawn from various fields, including media, bar, academia and civil society groups.
They include: Emeka Izeze, former Managing Director, Guardian Newspapers (Chairman); A. B Mahmoud (SAN), former President of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), Prof. Chinyere Stella Okunna, Deputy Vice Chancellor, (Academics) Paul University, Awka, Anambra State.

Others include: Dr Hussain Abdu, a Development Specialist and Country Director, Care International (Nigeria); Lanre Idowu, Editor-in-Chief, Diamond Publications Ltd. and Founder, of Diamond Awards for Media Excellence (DAME).

Also, Edetaen Ojo, Executive Director, Media Rights Agenda (MRA); Dupe Ajayi-Gbadebo, a journalist, Lawyer and Arbitrator, Eugenia Abu, Broadcaster, Author, and Columnist, and the Chair, House of Representatives Committee on Information.
The inauguration, according to the statement, is a major step by the media industry to strengthen public confidence in the media through prompt resolution of issues bordering on ethical breaches in media content.

The commission will also act as a credible barometer of public opinion.
Yusuf noted that the process is being driven by the NPO comprising the NPAN; Nigerian Guild of Editors (NGE); Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ); Broadcasting Organisation of Nigeria (BON); Guild of Corporate Online Publishers (GOCOP) alongside other strategic media partners and the civil society, in particular, the MacArthur Foundation.

“The commission will serve as an independent forum for resolving complaints about the press quickly, fairly, and free of charge; maintain high standards of Nigerian Journalism and journalistic ethics; and defend the freedom of the press and the rights of the people to know,” the statement noted.

Media organisations have earlier been directed to institute at the newspaper level, a local Ombudsman before February 22, when the commission was created.
The National Ombudsman will serve as an appellate body for the local Ombudsman as well as a court of first instance, Yusuf said.

Related Articles