The World Health Organisation (WHO), on Wednesday, began a two-day training programme for over 30 journalists in Maiduguri on emergency heath reporting.
Dr Chima Onuekwe, the WHO Communication Specialist, said that the exercise was designed to expose the journalists to best reporting practices, to save lives during emergencies.
Onuekwe said that the exercise would also provide a platform for the organisation to interact with the journalists engaged in health emergencies coverage in the North-East.
He noted that the media had a greater role to play in creating awareness and preventing disease and promoting behavioral change.
“Public health is about disease prevention during emergencies, and people are more concerned about how to protect themselves and family.
“Media reports should, therefore, be based on information for the purpose of saving lives,” he said.
Onuekwe added that over 30 journalists drawn from Adamawa, Borno and Yobe States participated in the exercise.
Alhaji Haruna Baba-Sheikh, the Chairman of the Nigerian Union of Journalists (NUJ), Borno State Council, commended the gesture, adding that it would go a long way to enhance coverage of health issues in the region.
Baba-Sheikh said that the exercise would also promote understanding and mutual working relations between the organisation and the media.
“It will enable the journalists to have a better understanding and encourage effective post insurgency health emergencies coverage,” he said.
He disclosed that the union in collaboration with the WHO would conduct similar training to build the capacity of its members.
The chairman said that the union had registered about 230 journalists in Borno.
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