The Senior Special Assistant to the Governor of Bayelsa State on Research & Social Media and Secretary to the Committee on Public Information Management Comrade John Idumange has urged Saharareporters to practice developmental journalism.

He made this remark when he was accosted by journalists in Yenagoa, about a misleading write up made by the outfit to the effect that the Public Information Management Committee is out to gag the press. Idumange John said, as an online publishing website, Saharareporters earned my respect in 2009 hence I effectively and proactively contributed my articles to enliven political discuss on the platform, but as from 2011, I think the managers started to hobnob with politicians who may be ready to offer brown envelop to publish their materials without investigation.

A former Governor of Imo State fell into that trap. It was at that point I stopped sending my articles to saharareporters. You can go to the archives of sahara reporters and confirm what I am saying, Idumange told the journalists. The sharp degeneracy to cash and carry journalism smacks of un-professionalism and a massive disservice to those who had believed in saharareporters as an authentic source of information. I cannot say if they dropped some of their good editors, but the bellicosity and anti-government posturing bodes-ill for them. Government is not always wrong. Certain decisions are informed by circumstances which only those in government are aware of.

The world over, journalism loses its meaning when it thrives on blatant falsehood. In journalism, you are guided by truth, fair reporting and objective analysis of events but the consistent anti-government posturing because of the allure of material gains is journalism of the sepulcher. To assert that saharareporters made efforts to reach me on phone is not only ridiculous but it is Ignoratio elenchi. It is Kettle logic – using multiple inconsistent arguments to defend a position, Idumange said. Kettle logic or mind projecting fallacy is a negation of robust journalistic practice.

The Social Media Chief therefore advised saharareporters to be more diligent to investigate and interrogate political mischief makers to know the truth before going to press. The social responsibility function of journalism is to protect the public and contribute to the development of society, for that is the genesis and revelation of journalistic practice, Idumange reiterated.


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