CSBS News Desk
The female gender has received scarce representation in media reportage despite their roles and contributions to the country’s development.
This was the submission of journalists at the public presentation of a research report titled ‘mainstreaming gender reporting on affirmative action of women and girls rights issues.’
The review was organized by Journalists for Christ (JCF) Nigeria, and World Association for Christian Communication (WACC)
The 38-page report is a one month media monitoring report on the portrayal and reportage of women and girls rights issues in six national newspapers in Nigeria.
Selected newspapers are; The Punch, The Guardian, Vanguard, Daily Trust, Daily Sun and The Nation.
In an extensive review of the publication, Mrs. Ugonma Cokey, Assistant Director (News) Voice of Nigeria(VON) said the choice of the newspapers is prompted by the fact that they are known for ‘credibility and have synonymous house styles.’
She observed that the female gender is grossly marginalized in the media according to findings.
In her words; ‘the publication observed that despite the fact pages were supposed to be focused on women, they were not limited to women, report advocating gender balance is low and most reports still focus on women as subjects of showbiz and entertainment.”
Further, ‘stories on women are highly urbanized and mostly state men as sources.’
While urging journalists to be gender-balance in their reportage, she noted that the recommendations of the publication if well adopted will further amplify the voices of the females.
‘The action plans include; public presentation of monitoring for engagement of editors, training of select journalists as gender advocates, periodic CSO-media roundtable and collaborations with stakeholders.”
In her remark, Mrs Dupe Osinkolu, the Chairperson of the National Association of Women Journalists(NAWOJ) urged female journalists to be ‘steadfast and be punctual to events.’
“Many Journalist go to assignment late and when they do, the usual practice is to ask for details from colleagues and that is why we get the same story from different media. Some will not even show and rely on copy and paste. Also we need to steer clear of expecting reward for reporting.” She said.
Earlier, the president of JFC Nigeria Mr Lekan Otufodunrin, Online Editor of The Nation Newspaper challenged senior media personnel to encourage more females to embrace the profession.
This according to him will go a long way in reporting issues about the female gender.