The presidential campaign teams of the Peoples Democratic Party and All Progressives Congress have asked online publishers to support their candidates and expressed the desire to partner with them
THE campaign teams of the presidential candidates of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, and the All Progressives Party, APC, have said that they would partner with online publishers to ensure that they get maximum coverage of their activities in their various medium. They campaign teams stated this at the different meetings they had with members of the Guild of Corporate Online Editors, GOCOP, on Monday, January 19, in Abuja.
At the meeting with Tunde Adeniran, the deputy director general of the presidential campaign team of PDP, said the party would partner with professional online journalists in the bid to develop the nation. Adeniran, a former minister of education described journalism as an “impactful profession”, adding that with the development of the online media, the expectation of the society from journalists had gone a notch higher. In reaching out to Nigerians, both within and outside the country, the online media has become a critical factor, he said adding, the patriotic duty before the PDP requires that the party works with the online publishers in the bid to disseminate what the administration of President Goodluck Jonathan had achieved.
Adeniran said contrary to what the opposition had been disseminating, the administration of President Jonathan had performed creditably in all sectors, adding that what was required now was for Jonathan to be given the second term mandate to build on his achievements. He cited the transformation of the airports, rehabilitation of major roads in the country, revolutionising agriculture, eliminating corruption in the distribution of agriculture and building strong institution to ensure that corruption is nipped in the bud in the country as some of the president’s achievements.
“Having gone through what we have gone through as a nation, what are the choices? We need to make the choices. We cannot afford not to be conscious of two things: this country belongs to all of us. We have to factor our various tendencies into all we do so we do not create more problems. You do not solve a problem by creating the ground for future battles. That is why people question the handling of issues by the President. It is simply because the President considers the future implications of any decision before taking it,” he said.
Adeniran said the online media has a critical role to play in this regard, adding: “The role of the online media should be to either assist or damage the move of the leader. And when the decision is to damage, it can be more damaging than even what external enemies will do. So, when we partner, it presupposes a meeting of minds. I have done sufficient homework to value partnership. We do not exist without having people value your contribution to the society. The interest of our country as partners should be paramount,” he said.
Adeniran expressed confidence that Jonathan would emerge victorious in the February 14, presidential election, adding that the president had performed exceedingly well to deserve a second term.
Contrarily, Garba Shehu, director of media and publicity of the All Progressives Congress Presidential Campaign Council, said the failure of Jonathan to deliver democratic dividends to Nigerians was at the root of the failure of the Peoples Democratic Party to base its campaign on issues.
Garba said because the government of Jonathan had failed, that was why non-issues and abuses have become the order of the day in the campaign of the PDP. He told members of the Guild of Corporate Online Publishers that: “Ordinarily, Jonathan’s campaign should have been based on his achievements. They are running against their own records. So it would have been easy for them to present their scorecards to Nigerians rather attacking the presidential candidate of the APC, Muhammadu Buhari, who has not attacked anyone.”
He said contrary to the position being publicised by the PDP, Buhari will not tamper with the free speech of Nigerians, saying: “Men change. Buhari was a military man, but now democrat. He will not even censor online. The censorship of online will come from the community of users itself. The APC will work with the online publishers to deepen online journalism,” he added.
Dele Alake, former Commissioner for Information in Lagos State and an APC stalwart, who was also at the meeting, thanked the online publishers for taking time out to visit the party. Alake said the coming together of professional journalists to form GOCOP was a good development, adding: “It is a symbol of good things to come.” Online journalism is the present and future of journalism. Most people of voting age are now on social media. So whoever takes online media with levity is undoing himself,” he said.