#TrackNigeria Dr Kole Shettima, the Regional Director, MacArthur Foundation, has advised Nigerian journalists to embrace and do more investigative reporting to promote good governance and deepen democracy in the country.
Kole gave the advice in an interview on the sidelines of the ongoing 11th Global Investigative Journalism Conference (GIJC19), on Saturday in Hamburg, Germany.
He said that media practitioners could make positive contributions to national development if they held public officers and the private sector accountable.
The director, who noted that investigative journalism could be painstaking and risky, said, however, that the risk was part of the challenges and hazards like in any other profession.
“Some investigations take as long as six to nine months or more before a credible report is published.
“But, it is worth the trouble if it is meant to expose a fraud, hold individuals and organisations accountable and responsible for their actions or inaction.
“I believe that any good investigative report will greatly influence policies, decisions and actions,” Kole said.
On the conference, he said that it was interesting interacting with people coming from diverse backgrounds and sharing experiences, knowledge and skills.
“For instance, I attended a session on artificial intelligence investigation and came out empty after about one and a half hours because I don’t understand the issues.
“I also attended a session on marine investigation; how to track ships and boats. I think this is also a new phenomenon in journalism that must be of interest to Nigerian journalists,” the director said.
According to him, this underscored the interest of the foundation to sponsor some journalists from Nigeria to attend the conference, draw experiences and practice the knowledge on return home.
Kole also called on media proprietors and governments to provide the enabling environment for journalists to discharge their constitutional obligations.
NAN reports that the 4-day conference attracted about 1,800 delegates from across the world, including Nigeria.
The organisers say it is designed to further popularise investigative journalism as well as support and promote good governance in the society. (NAN)