Uniform for journalists | The Guardian Nigeria News


There’s this friend of mine, a very nasty prankster named Vitone, who keeps emphasizing that journalists should be made to wear uniforms like police officers. My friend argues that journalists’ role as society’s watchdogs puts them on the same pedestal as the police.

He then launches the bombshell that journalists actually collect more bribes than the police; hence the need for journalists to have the same brand of uniform as their bribe colleagues, that is to say the police!

Since I am the moonlighting poet as a journalist, let me play devil’s advocate by playing the “satanic verses” of this friend “uniform for journalists”.

It turns out that journalism is a ubiquitous profession in which the existence of a common uniform for all can lend some regulation to the profession and its disparate practitioners. The lack of uniforms actually causes all kinds of charlatans and fakes to pass themselves off as journalists. Anyone wearing some sort of journalist’s uniform would thus be properly identified instead of hiding behind different coats and dresses to commit disorder in the name of the profession. If journalists were to wear uniforms like police officers, they would no longer see the need to ask for “brown envelopes” – they would take the money directly, saving the country the cost of the envelope!

Low-ranking journalists wouldn’t pose to raise a lot of money like they are editors! These lower ranking journalists would end up collecting N20 or N50 ratings like their fellow police officers! The fear, however, is that many guys end up tampering with uniforms and giving themselves all kinds of ranks.
After all, a living journalist who loved the headlines so much took the title of RIP (Rest in Peace) without knowing what it was!

It can become scandalous when journalists start to call themselves Supol! Mopol! DPO! IG journalism! etc.

The uniform issue will require the establishment of a special body to control the wearing of uniforms by journalists. The catch is that members of the body responsible for overseeing journalists’ uniforms can end up impersonating journalists themselves!

After all, such a thing happened during the awarding of the Nigerian Literature Prize in an unfortunate year when judges who were members of the Academy of Letters ended up taking the $ 50,000 prize in a classic case. from 419!

If this can happen among the old egg heads of Nigerian academia, then the case among journalists and their assistants is best left to the imagination …

With crisp uniforms, journalists can then keep a strong guard as paparazzi at checkpoints in Nigeria’s many high-end hotels! The nuisance of seeing badly dressed fellows harassing guests on behalf of reporters as had always been the case would end for good. There is the problem however that once armed with the uniform, journalists can start to fight for the right to be armed with firearms like the police! Now we’re going to start having Kill-and-Go reporters!

Journalists can then actually “point and kill” as had been the special privilege of the police.

When armed journalists clash with armed police, then it will be the armed robbers’ fort to save the earth! This is a very serious business that can kill all the laughs that are left in Nigeria. In this way, we risk losing our world title as the happiest people in God’s land. Much like the police have the Criminal Investigation Department (CID), journalists who would not want to appear in uniform can join the CID’s journalism section as daredevil investigative journalists.

In short, it would be a win-win story for Nigeria’s push pens. Some may hide their uniforms and pretend to be CID journalists when the occasion calls for it.

Since reporters hardly ever retire, some of these uniforms would become very threadbare and worn over time, so seasoned reporters might look more like mechanics in their old tattered uniforms. It may then be necessary to rethink the idea of ​​having some sort of calico uniform so that veteran journalists last them to death.

There is the other dimension that journalists in uniform can form a wing of SARS just like the police! Now I think I am entering a dangerous zone because just as the public revolted against the police during the EndSARS uprising, there could be a revolution in prospect labeled End-Journalism-SARS! A journalist in uniform will then become marked targets as the SARS agents who had to hide their uniforms in dark polythene bags when the young people gathered at Lekki Tollgate.

Finally, instead of fighting for the full implementation of the Freedom of Information (FOI) law, Nigerian journalists should take full responsibility for defending a new cause: Uniform for all Nigerian journalists! What makes the police superior to journalists so that they are always dressed in their uniform when journalists cannot boast? The only thing better than freedom of the press, I dare say it, is the obligation to sew the uniform for all journalists.

As lawmakers would say, this is a matter of urgent national importance!


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