The Federal Government has restated its commitment to freedom of speech and press to promote and provide dividends of democracy to the citizens.
The Minister of Information and National Orientation, Alhaji Mohammed Idris stated this while receiving officials of the International Press Institute (IPI), Nigeria.
This is contained in a statement by Mr Suleiman Haruna, the Deputy Director of Press in the Ministry, on Wednesday in Abuja.
According to the Minister, freedom of the press plays a pivotal role in the institutionalisation of democracy in the country, adding that it should be recognised for this vital role.
The Minister re-echoed the position of President Bola Tinubu on the matter, saying he was a product of democratic struggle and therefore had every reason to support freedom of the press,
Idris said the president had promised that his government would not consciously trample on the press.
“In a democratic society where the role of the media is established, we must allow it to play its role in reporting and setting agenda for development. We only ask practitioners to be responsible in this duty.
“The Nigerian polity is desirous of social engineering for which the government requires the support of all stakeholders, including the press.
“Cleaning this system for optimum performance is a collective responsibility,’’ Idris was quoted as saying in the statement.
He commended the President of the IPI Nigeria on his appointment and urged him to apply his excellent example in online publishing to his new role.
Earlier, the President of the IPI, Mr Musikilu Mojeed, said the media landscape in Nigeria was improving, adding that there was renewed hope for media practice.
Mojeed called on the government to ensure the safety of journalists wherever they work.
He reassured the minister, who he described as a foundation member of the institute in Nigeria, of their support.
The President of IPI expressed optimism that Tinubu’s administration had marked itself as a media-friendly nation with the minister’s appointment. (NAN)