Farmers, herders’ crises: Expert tasks media practitioners on objectivity, stereotypes

As the spate of conflicts among farmer, herders continues across the country, Data and Science Journalist, Chikezie Omeje has called on media practitioners across the country to shun perpetuation of stereotypes in their reportage, stating that it doesn’t solve conflicts.

Chikezie noted this at virtual workshop while delivering a 2020 Davis Projects for peace on Covering farmer-herder violence through data-driven solution Journalism on Monday.

According to him, journalists should avoid unnecessary stereotypes while reporting farmers/herders crisis and do solution-driven reports.

He said there is the need to amplify the voices of victims affected in the communities by reporting in-depth the issues affecting them.

He also observed that violence could be reduced, if communities are able to maintain peace with herders.

He also noted that as the crisis keeps escalating, the federal government is yet to find a lasting solution to it, adding that the media should rather use their reportage to douse the tension.

On basic assumptions, Chikezie explained that violence could be sustainably prevented or reduced if there is an improved awareness of the magnitude and negative impact of the conflicts.

On database for farmer-herder violence, Chikezie observed that Nigeria lacks open database on the farmer-herder conflicts.

He identified that information on the attacks are scattered through various media, adding that there is the need to collect data on conflict and build a database.

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