- The federal government has promised to launch a massive national campaign in support of the military
- Minister of information and culture Alhaji Lai Mohammed said the campaign will be similar to the previous ones launched by the ministry on burning issues such as fake news and hate speech
- He added that the ministry will mobilise Nigerians irrespective of their political leanings to show support for the military
Alhaji Lai Mohammed, Nigeria's minister of information and culture has revealed the intention of the federal government to launch a massive national campaign in support of the military, especially in their fight against insurgency and insecurity.
“We are planning to launch a national campaign to rally support for the military. We believe the men and women who are risking all to keep us safe deserve the support and prayers of all Nigerians, not vilification, insults and other acts that are capable of dampening their morale,” the minister said at a press briefing in Abuja on Tuesday, January 8, the minister said in a statement made available to Legit.ng by Segun Adeyemi, SA to the minister.
According to him, the campaign will be similar to the previous ones launched by the ministry on burning issues such as fake news and hate speech, insurgency and the fight against corruption.
He added that the ministry will mobilise Nigerians irrespective of their political leanings to show support for the military.
“I think it is high time that everybody, irrespective of political affiliation, joined in supporting the war (against insurgency). It’s not unusual, as a matter of fact it’s usually the practice, that when a country is faced with this kind of challenge, people will sink their differences and work together. So, very soon, you will expect to hear from us on this campaign to support the military in the fight against not just insurgency but in the fight against insecurity,'' Alhaji Mohammed said.
Going further, the minister lamented how some Nigerians, particularly opposition politicians, have made it their past-time to wage a campaign of disinformation against the military on the social media, saying such unpatriotic acts are discouraging and demoralizing the men and women in uniform.
“I think the biggest opposition probably today that the military has is probably not Boko Haram, it’s probably the Social Media because it’s so uncontrolled. Today, video clips are doctored and clips of happenings in other lands are now reported and sent out as if they are happening in Nigeria. Unfortunately, there is no one to hold responsible. This is very discouraging and it demoralizes the military.
“That brings me to the bigger issue of overall support for our military. Recent developments are disturbing. The activities of a section of the media and some opposition political parties are demoralizing the military and strengthening the insurgents. Without seeking or waiting for official clarification, outrageous casualty figures are prominently reported. Without consideration for national security, military plans are recklessly revealed. Not even in the United States, the bastion of democracy, does this happen,” he said.
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Alhaji Mohammed said even though the government would neither censor nor gag the media, journalists must strike a balance between the constitutionally-guaranteed freedom to receive and impart information and national security.
Meanwhile, Legit.ng had reported that the detained Maiduguri Bureau Chief of Daily Trust, Uthman Abubakar, was released by the military authorities who detained him since the afternoon of Sunday, January 6.
The editor-in-chief of Daily Trust, Mannir Dan-Ali, announced the release shortly after speaking to the editor who was reportedly brought back to the Maiduguri office by an unnamed Major.
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