By Donald Ugwu
Acting President Yemi Osinbajo has requested the country’s chapter of the International Press Institute (IPI) to use the 2018 edition of the institute’s world congress in Abuja to project the country’s image to the globe.
He gave the advice when the board of the Nigerian chapter of the IPI paid him a courtesy visit at the Presidential Villa.
According to him, “It is a very important opportunity for Nigeria to showcase ourselves and also to show that Nigeria is safe and secure for business.
“It is also an opportunity to advertise all of our ease of doing business initiatives.’’
The Acting President assured the IPI that the Buhari administration would partner the Nigerian chapter of the IPI to host a hitch-free 2018 World Congress of the Global Network of Free Media.
He also assured the board that states could participate in the hosting, especially as it provided “an important opportunity for tourism and for them to showcase some of the great initiatives that they have.’’
Osinbajo stated that the pledge was in line with the administration’s commitment to promote private sector partnership.
He further urged the local organizing committee to consider putting on the agenda of the June 2018 event, the issue of hate speech and its implications for the polity and for peace and security.
“The forum is an important one for raising the question of hate speech and its implications for our country, for our polity and for peace and security.’’
“Somehow these things are resonating all over the world, new found nationalism and all of that.
“But I think for us here in Nigeria, it is a very important issue.
“I think that it is important that we find ways of controlling these things.
“I think that we owe a responsibility, especially leaders of journalism, to find ways of dealing with this issue because it is a cancer.’’
The Acting President thanked the delegation for the visit and for its efforts in ensuring that Nigeria was given the opportunity to host the world congress.
Earlier, the leader of the delegation and Chairman of Thisday newspapers, Chief Nduka Obaigbena, said that the visit was to intimate the Acting President of the forth coming conference to be hosted in Abuja.
Obaigbena solicited the Federal Government’s support in the hosting in different areas, including the provision of a secure and safe environment for delegates and visas on arrival.
He stated that hate speech would form one of the thematic issues to be discussed during the congress.
He also thanked the Acting President for the pledge to support IPI Nigeria in hosting a hitch-free congress.