oa Global Media Journal - African Edition - Conflict as an ideological orientation of the Nigerian media
The reality of the impact of the media on violent conflict has become a global phenomenon. In Nigeria, this reality is obviously driving the growing desiratum for the instituting of peace journalism. Owing to its complex make-up, however, but essentially as a result of a lack of a national resolve to forge a truly united nation, Nigeria has remained a country where ethnicity, regionalism and religion are objective factors of daily life. General perception tends, therefore, to cast the country's media as influenced by these primordial pulls, especially in times of crisis. This paper, however, argues that rather than primordial considerations, the Nigerian media is fundamentally driven by an ideology of conflict into which it was born; within which it was nurtured and which it has internalized from the colonial through immediate post-independence political era to the authoritarian military period. Thus the Nigerian media tends to operate with a siege mentality and as a media in captivity. The paper posits that until the media weans itself from this orientation, its perception of issues will continue to be shaped by the ideology of conflict, in which case the efforts at peace journalism may remain a mirage.
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