British envoy applauds NAN’s professionalism, role in media growth

British High Commissioner in Nigeria Richard Montgomery has applauded the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN’s) professionalism and leading role in the growth of the media, not just in Nigeria but in Africa as a continent.

Montgomery expressed the thought in Abuja on Tuesday when he paid a courtesy visit to the Managing Director of NAN, Malam Ali M. Ali.

The British envoy said the agency, through its operational standards, contributed meaningfully to advancing the growth of the media space in the country.

‘The agency has a pivotal role to play in the media environment, and what we always find impressive about Nigeria is that NAN has an incredibly diverse media landscape, and multiple channels with regional and national news coverage.

‘Some news agencies attempt to put out balanced news and you have to think carefully about what the news is, glancing into your mission statement.

‘We see NAN as one of the critical media agencies in Nigeria.

‘I am quite conscious that Nigeria could be quite a difficult place to
be a journalist. Yes, there is media freedom but there are also massive media challenges.

‘I think if you look at international comparative indices we are admiring journalists, people who made it their career to be part of the media sector.

‘We must keep talking to each other about media freedom and professionalism. Sometimes there are political challenges, so we admire people who uphold the profession and standards.’

Responding, the managing director of NAN acknowledged the long-standing relationship between the agency and the high commission.

He said the agency would continue to maintain its position as the biggest news content provider, not just in the country, but across Africa.

‘We are the biggest on the continent; we have offices in the southern parts of Africa, notably in South Africa.

‘We have had a long-standing relationship with the high commission and the British Council over the years, over many decades.

‘We have lived by our core mandate as NAN and we will attain 50 years of existence and
operation as a news agency. We welcome the idea of training and retraining of our staff.

‘We are in dire need of work tools.

‘Many young Nigerians have benefited immensely from the exposure offered to us by the British Council many years ago.

‘We have a strong affinity with the United Kingdom and look forward to greater cooperation and a robust relationship with the high commission under your leadership,’ Ali said.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria