By Ayomide Agbaje
The Cable Newspaper Journalism Foundation (CNJF) with the support from Open Society Initiative for West Africa (OSIWA) has trained four members of the Union of Campus Journalists, University of Ilorin, on best practices and contemporary trends in journalism on Monday and Tuesday, 29th-30th of March, 2021.
The intensive two-day capacity building workshop in Abuja had campus journalists from various tertiary institutions across the northern central part of Nigeria, after their successful applications and selected from a pool of entrants in the region.
The UCJ members selected and trained include Quayyim Adedimeji, Ayomide Agbaje, Sylvia Okedi and Soaga Oluwafunmilayo.
We are keen on nurturing talents to save the future of journalism, says CNJF
According to Joke Kujenya, CNJF programmes’ officer, the training was organised under the Campus Civic Media Campaign (CCMC) whose objective is to build the next generation of ethical and passionate journalists in Nigeria to present credible and facts-based news and stories geared towards driving accountability and good governance using the tool of investigative journalism and mentorship.
To achieve this, industry experts from various reputable media outlets in Nigeria were invited to deliver and facilitate intensive and interactive sessions with the student journalists.
Experts send down the ladder, share career experiences with participants
On the first day of the workshop, Ajibola Amzat, the editor of International Centre for Investigative Reporting (ICIR) delivered a session on basics of news writing and investigative journalism. The award-winning journalist also shared insights with the participants on the ethics and professionalism they should uphold of the job.
Also on the same day, Ruth Olurounbi, a freelance business reporter at Bloomberg, facilitated a session on fact checking and data reporting. She shared with the participants on how to use data for credible stories. However, she cautioned young journalists to always endeavour to verify their sources, ensure evidences are accurate and fact check their stories.
The final day of the training program featured Kunle Adebajo, Investigations Editor & Head of internal Fact-Check at HumAngle, and Chinedu Asadu, investigative reporter and senior staff writer at TheCable.
Kunle Adebajo spoke on identifying sources to tell stories and developing story ideas as a journalist. During his practical session, he engaged and brainstormed with the participants on strategies and ways to seek interesting and original story ideas by maximizing media tools, innovation, creativity and curiosity.
Chinedu Asadu took the participants on a session on the workings of pitching investigative stories the right way that attract editors to commission their story ideas. During his practical session, he made participants brainstorm on story ideas and also deliver their pitches to the audience in group presentations.
‘We will apply all we have learnt, do impact-driven stories’
Soaga Oluwafunmilayo from UCJ UNILORIN, said every training session in the workshop was a hit back to back. And she couldn’t thank The Cable Newspaper Journalism Foundation and OSIWA enough for the opportunity.
“But I know I can appreciate them by utilising all I learnt to the fullest from the training without leaving anything out,” she added.
Sylvia Okedi, a participant also from UCJ UNILORIN, expressed her delight for partaking in the workshop experience. She also thanked the organisers and sponsors for this rare privilege to receive mentorship and learn investigative reporting under experts.
“I didn’t just learn, I also met with amazing people and made fruitful connections. I will also get to action by working on my pitch and doing impact stories,” she said.
Put into practice what you have acquired, Simon Kolawole admonishes tranees
The Executive Director of Cable Newspaper Journalism Foundation, Simon Kolawole, who was represented by Fredrick Nwabufor, a senior staff at TheCable, thanked the participants for their engagements and urged them to maximize the skills and knowledge gained to grow their careers.
“Thank you so much for attending and being good participants. Put into practice what you’ve acquired,” he said. “The more you write, the better you become. On behalf of the Executive Director, I wish you all success in your careers.”