“Please Verify Information Before You Publish It,” EFCC Tells Journalist
The Executive Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Abdulrasheed Bawa, urged media outlets and journalists on Wednesday, to be cautious in their coverage of economic crimes and to ensure that stories are verified before publication during a workshop on the “Effective Reporting of Economic and Financial Crimes.”
During the workshop, which was held at the EFCC Headquarters in Abuja, Bawa pointed out that there were certain problems with the media negatively characterizing the anti-graft agency.
He also mentioned that the media occasionally characterized the commission’s strategy for combating cybercrime as being severe, adding that this may have resulted from a lack of knowledge of the anti-narcotics agency’s operating principles.
He said, “While wishing you a happy deliberation, let me use this opportunity to appeal to the media to be cautious in the coverage of economic crimes and ensure you verify your facts before publication. As a worthy, dependable, and reliable ally, I want to use this opportunity to further urge media practitioners to put the interest of our country at heart, particularly as it relates to a conscientious effort not to celebrate the corrupt in our midst, but to expose them on the pages of your newspapers, screens of television, or on our various online platforms.
“The war against corruption is a worthy fight for the soul of Nigeria, and for the future generation. It should not be left to the EFCC alone. Nevertheless, there are issues in the media profiling of the Commission that are less than desirable.
“The notion, for instance, that the Commission is draconian in its approach to fighting cybercrime is perhaps borne out of poor understanding of its modus operandi. But I am convinced that at the end of this workshop, we will all be better educated on the processes and procedures of the EFCC.
“As watchdog of society, you must be mindful that your reportage is a mirror that shapes global perception of our institutions and nation. It logically follows that this sacred duty is one that must be discharged with a lot of responsibility and, of course, patriotism.”