It is no news that media practice in Africa is facing enormous challenges, some of which include: diminishing level of public confidence, sensational reporting, brown envelop journalism, stereotyping, and promotion of divisive political/religious views. This is aggravated by growing apathy towards authoritative news sources especially among youths in Africa.
Information is very powerful and influential hence journalism remains a powerful profession across the globe. In any society, journalists take center stage in disseminating information and shaping public opinion on any issue. This highlights the need for media professionals with intellectual and practical skills required to protect society’s values and promote civic education for the socio-economic development of Africa and the world at large.
To this end, CSAAEINC in collaboration with the Centre for Media and Peace Initiative (CMPI) – New York, launched the Youth Media Initiative (YMI) during the Centre’s 5th International Youth Leadership, Career Building, and Entrepreneurship Summit held at University of Ilorin, Kwara State on June 2nd, 2018. The YMI is targeted at young people who hope to make a career in journalism and other aspects of public policy and administration to mentor and provide them with the intellectual and practical skills to understand journalism especially its fast-changing environment.
As an organization that supports critical journalism and trains investigative journalists, CMPI – under the leadership of Dr. Uchenna Ekwo, will work with CSAAEINC to groom aspiring African media professionals who will play key roles in facilitating development and ending poverty in the continent. CSAAEINC is an international Non-profit Organization founded by Rev. Fr. Dr. Godswill Agbagwa, with a mission to help youths build the capacities, competencies, and character to facilitate development, end poverty and make Africa a better place. The Centre achieves this through four ongoing successful programmes namely: Emerging African Leaders Program (ELP); Career Building and Entrepreneurship Program (CBEP); Students Ethics and Anticorruption Network – (SEACON); and Network of Effective African Leaders (NEAL),
YMI which is a component of CBEP will serve as a platform to nurture young ethics conscious African journalists and media practitioners on conflict-resolving media practice, critical journalism devoted to peacebuilding and holding practitioners accountable, ethical and investigative journalism, likewise building a media system that supports peace, dialogue, non-violence, and democracy.
Pioneer YMI members inducted during the launch include Akushie Alexandria, Akinyemi Adedeji, ThankGod Akpa, Jude Chijindu, Iroaganachi Innocent, Adisa-Jaji Azeez, Richard Opaluwa, Ajiboye Emmanuel, Amadi Raphael, Richard Allen Afahaene, Ezekiel Efebhokan, Damian Edeh, Abayomi Samuel and Anozie Nnaemeka. This group of young African journalists will in no distant time, revitalize journalism in Africa and contribute their own quota towards making Africa a better place.