Media-Military Relations: Nigerian Air Force Holds 2019 Air Power Enlightenment Workshop For Defence Correspondents
The Nigerian Air Force (NAF), conducted an enlightenment Workshop on Air Power for Defence Correspondents in Abuja. The one-day Workshop, witnessed a large turnout of journalists from different media organizations covering various Defence beats. Organised by the NAF Directorate of Public Relations and Information (DOPRI), the Workshop was aimed at better equipping Defence Correspondents with requisite skills and updated knowledge on the application of Air Power. It was also intended to acquaint Defence Correspondents with various Air Power terminologies in a bid to enhance professionalism in the reportage of NAF events thereby projecting the NAF in a more accurate and balanced manner.
While declaring the Workshop open, the Chief of the Air Staff (CAS), Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar, who was represented by the Chief of Administration, Air Vice Marshal Kingsley Lar, stated that information management in contemporary times is critical to national development. He added that the way information is processed could affect national security either positively or negatively. “Therefore, a Defence Correspondent must understand the terminologies associated with his beat to enable him report events professionally”, he stated. The CAS enjoined Defence Correspondents to make good use of the opportunity offered by the Workshop to acquire pertinent knowledge about the NAF. According to him, there is a growing need for journalists to understand the nuances and technicalities involved in air operations as the nation strives to maintain peace and stability.
Earlier in his welcome address, the Director of Public Relations and Information, Air Commodore Ibikunle Daramola, commended the Defence Correspondents for their dedication in covering and reporting military activities. He pointed out that, while there had been some improvement in the level of reportage of NAF activities, especially in the ongoing counterinsurgency operations as well as other monumental achievements of the current NAF leadership, it was clear that there were still some gaps in the manner in which news on NAF and the Insurgency in Nigeria was being reported and disseminated. According to him, the workshop could not have come at a more appropriate time than now, as public expectation of accurate and timely dissemination of information on NAF operations across the country is on the increase. He then expressed his appreciation to the CAS for his strategic guidance, which led to the conduct of the Workshop.
During the one-day Workshop, seasoned resource persons, all of whom were drawn from the NAF, presented 4 papers. The papers covered; NAF Hierarchy and Rank Structure, Characteristics and Limitations of Air Power, Aircraft Types in the NAF Inventory and Roles, as well as Armaments on NAF Aircraft. Participating Defence Correspondents expressed delight at the opportunity to attend the Workshop, which they described as being “quite informative and educative”. They commended the NAF leadership for deploying resources to add value to their capacity to undertake their assignments as Defence Correspondents, which will stimulate professionalism. Certificates of participation were later presented to the Defence Correspondents who attended the Workshop.
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