By Victor Nwachukwu
Owerri, Nov. 10, 2022 (NAN) Former Minister of Information, Chief Nnia Nwodo, has urged the Nigeria Guild of Editors to play the role of agenda setting ahead of the 2023 general elections.
Nwodo, who is also the immediate past President-General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo Worldwide, made the call at the 18th Annual Editors’ Conference, in Owerri, on Thursday.
The information minister charged the editors to rise to the challenge of representation of facts bordering on national development.
Presenting a paper entitled “Mobilizing Citizens for Sustainable Democracy”, Nwodo said that with the 2023 general elections in sight, such facts would aid Nigerians’ choice of the nation’s next set of leaders.
According to him, editors should focus on issues of national development, issues that would guide the electorate on how to choose their leaders in the forthcoming general elections.
Nwodo urged editors to interrogate presidential candidates of different political parties on their plans to salvage Nigeria’s economy as well as addressing challenges ranging from insecurity to youth restiveness, among others.
“Nigeria needs restructuring. We must plan for the rainy day, shift away from dependence on oil to development of human capital resources. We must move from distribution of resources to production of resources.
“A conservative model aimed at maintaining the status quo merely scratches the surface of our problems. To achieve a national consensus in this area requires a national dialogue.
He said editors should cultivate values and standards for public office holders, adding that “you can stop the destruction of our collective matrimony by omission and commission and re-convince our children of our nationhood’’.
“We must make our presidential candidates speak up on their plans for accountability, our over-financial legislature, and the seemingly overstretched armed forces.
“Also, the readiness of INEC to conduct credible elections, and readiness to move from consumption to productive economy,’’.
He, however, advocated for the restructuring of Nigeria through the creation of federating units and the devolution of powers to the units as the only way to salvage the country’s “fledgling economy”.
“The Press has a huge role in this regard to find the expected roles of stakeholders in the restructuring of Nigeria with a view to bringing such to limelight.
“Arise and define our country and its politics; hesitate and be defined by history,’’ he said.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the three day All Nigeria Editors Conference (ANEC) which began on Nov.9 would end on Nov. 13.