Islamic cleric and Chief Imaam of Government House in Ekiti state Alhaji Abdul Fatai Olorunkemi has urged Journalists to desist from all forms of misinformation to avoid tension and disunity in the country.
Imaam Olorunkemi made this call on Friday in his sermon during Jumat service in Ado-Ekiti, the state capital. He decried the damages which fake news cause in the society as being perpetrated by some “unprofessional Journalists”.
The cleric stressed on the need for unity , understanding and peaceful coexistence devoid of religious and ethnic crisis in Nigeria for the country to surmount all forms of challenges affecting the nation.
He highlighted crucial roles of Journalists in nation building,urged pen professionals to abide by the rules of Journalism and always focus on balanced and unbaised reportage.
The Islamic cleric decried the rate at which some purveyors of fake news attempted to hide under the killings which occured recently in Owo, Ondo state to generate religious crisis,charged on verification of information before making news report.
“Fake News causes tension in the society Journalists as the fourth estate of the realm should advocate unity and peace in the society. Sensational headlines and reports should be avoided. Security , economic and other challenges could be tackled when fake news is avoided.
” Anytime I come across a news in any medium, i cross check in other mediums to ascertain the facts.
” For instance during the sad development that occured in Owo, Ondo state where the souls of innocent people were lost, different news were read especially in the social media attributing it to religious crisis some news indicated that the incident was an attempt to Lord a particular religion over others.
” The news was proved wrong when some suspects were recently arrested in connection with the killings. The state governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu who confirmed the arrest has assured necessary investigation would be conducted while culprits would face wrath of the law”.
Imaam Olorunkemi appealed to all Journalists to embrace Fear of God and patriotism while discharging their professional roles.