Journalistic Responsibilities amid Primordial Pressure in Reporting Conflict in Benue State, Nigeria (Published)
Conflict is a dangerous situation but when it is properly managed and reported, it becomes a blessing to the parties experiencing it. This study examined the responsibilities of journalists and the pressure they encounter while reporting conflicts in Benue State of Nigeria. The study adopted qualitative research method with 20 journalists purposefully selected from Radio Benue, Makurdi; NTA Makurdi; Sun Rays FM, Korinya and The Pavilion Newspaper, Makurdi including male and female journalists. Research questions focusing on the purpose of the investigation guided the study. A standardized open-ended interview format was used to collect data. The data collected were analyzed using explanation building model. The result of the research questions showed that the factors that influence journalists, pressure that influence framing of news by journalists, strategies journalists employ in reporting conflicts are many. The study revealed that journalists are contributors of peace building before, during, and after crises. The study recommended among others that journalists should be peace-oriented when reporting conflict especially those of cross-border nature. And journalists can do this by providing a forum for a critical analysis of issues in a conflict through incisive, informed and critical comments from editorialists, columnists, opinion and feature writers among others so as to open up the space for discussion from all fronts which would enlighten the reading public and possibly, the official negotiators in a conflict.
Keywords: Benue, Conflict, Nigeria, State, journalistic responsibilities, primordial pressure