A pseudo-analysis in an online news medium with the above title, to which my attention was drawn, recalls that genre of journalism where anything-goes, which is normally associated with the yellow press.
The story, published by nigeriannewsdirect.com and marked by conspicuous lack of facts and by obfuscating generalizations, should ordinarily be ignored but for the need to set the records straight and steer the discourse away from conjectures.
The story basically insinuated that Senators Ahmad Lawan and Bukar Abba Ibrahim, representing Yobe Zone C and Zone A respectively, and Rep Goni Bukar Lawan, representing Bursari, Gaidam and Yunusari Federal Constituency, have created a “faction” within the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) in the state and have “moved against” Governor Ibrahim Gaidam over the recent state congress of the party.
First, nothing could be further from the truth. All the three-named politicians have participated in the APC congress and no news medium in the country has quoted – or reported – any of them as disagreeing with the conduct of the congress or with the party leaders that have emerged from it. The idea that there is a faction made up of the three of them is therefore a fiction manufactured by the publication.
Second, the publication talked about a “plan” by Governor Gaidam to “impose his anointed candidate on the party” without a scintilla of proof. Nigeriannewsdirect.com, which clearly seemed to have an issue with basic professionalism, did not even make the scantiest attempt to talk to the three-named politicians to hear directly from them but rather resorted to generalizing about ‘factions’ that they allegedly led.
Since Senators Ahmad Lawal and Bukar Abba Ibrahim as well as Rep Goni Bukar Lawan were all present at the state party congress in Damaturu, a credible news medium, given to credible news reporting, will unquestionably seek to talk to them directly before it could do a news report that can pass as credible.
Third, the publication did not provide a timeline for when the issue of governorship candidate arose and what sequence of events led to the three national assembly politicians coming out to “move against” the governor.
It is clear, from the foregoing, that the report by nigeriannewsdirect.com is a conjecture in the tradition of yellow journalism. Yellow journalism, although chiefly American, is a type of journalism that “presents no legitimate well-researched news” and uses such techniques as scandal-mongering and sensationalism to treat the news in an unprofessional and unethical manner.
Here is the point: There are no factions of the APC led by Senator Ahmad Lawal or Senator Bukar Abba Ibrahim or Rep Goni Bukar Lawal.
The APC in Yobe State is a traditionally and continuously strong party that has won many elective positions in the past and that will win again, God willing.
The APC is also led by the state governor, as is the case in all states of the federation where it is the ruling party.
Here in Yobe, Governor Gaidam has distinguished himself as a leader with a strong commitment to the welfare of the people and the development of the state. Across Yobe’s nooks and crannies, he is known as the governor who has built so many roads, improved water supply, re-invented the state’s healthcare sector, repositioned the civil service and took steps to rebuild our education system after it was nearly toppled by Boko Haram terror.
Within the APC, he is recognised not just in Yobe State but across the country as a level-headed and conscientious politician who is a pillar of stability and progress in the party.
While it is true that as we head to the preparations for the 2019 elections there will be all sorts of commentary and punditry about politics and politicking, one would expect that publications with a name to protect would adhere to basic values of decency and truth and will always be guided by the time-honoured traditions of balance and fairness in journalistic reporting.
Mr Bego writes from Damaturu, Yobe State.