The governor of Oyo State, Abiola Ajimobi, has called on publishers of online newspapers to ensure a strict compliance to the ethics of journalism.
Speaking through his Special Adviser of Communication and Strategy, Mr Yomi Layinka, the governor said it has even become imperative for online publishers to raise the standards of conversation in the media space to ensure that the country attains world best practices in governance and democratic growth.
He made the call when members of the Southwest Group of Online Publishers (SWEGOP) paid him a courtesy visit in his office on Wednesday.
Lamenting that online publishers are becoming a menace on the media space, the governor opined that the country would be overwhelmed if the professional publishers fail to regulate the practice in partnership with the government.
Stressing that the menace is also growing in the radio sub-sector of the media, Ajimobi said journalism has to be regulated.
His words: “As professional publishers, you are expected to raise the highest ethical standards of the profession. In this profession, facts are scared. Opinion should take second place. It is unfortunate that in our society, rumour mongering thrives.
“We are all stakeholders in the society. This confers a duty on all of us to protect what we have. For instance, the fact that we enjoy peace in Oyo State today should not be taken for granted. We should be mindful of how we use the power we have as publishers. I am happy to know that SWEGOP self-regulates its members. Our expectation is that media professional will use their platforms to promote peace.”
Earlier, SWEGOP Chairman, Mr Olayinka Agboola, explained that the group is made up of serious and professional online publishers across the Southwest states, adding that the group was still growing.
Agboola pointed out that that online journalism is growing to become a core part of the media space due to the penetration of the internet and popularity of mobile devices.