COMMUNIQUE ISSUED AT THE 1-DAY CAPACITY BUILDING WORKSHOP THEMED:
CORRUPTION, ELECTION AND THE TROUBLED DEMOCRACY: THE ROLE OF THE MEDIA
AND CSOS FOR CIVIL SOCIETY ORGANIZATIONS (CSOS) AND MEDIA EXECUTIVES.
THE WORKSHOP WAS ORGANIZED AS PART OF THE PROJECT ON PRIORITIZING
ANTI-CORRUPTION AND ACCOUNTABILITY ISSUES DURING THE UPCOMING 2023
ELECTIONS AT STATE LEVEL BY THE CENTRE FOR ANTI-CORRUPTION AND OPEN
LEADERSHIP, CACOL IN COLLABORATION WITH CIVIL SOCIETY LEGISLATIVE
ADVOCACY CENTRE (CISLAC) WITH SUPPORT OF MACARTHUR FOUNDATION. HELD AT
RIGHTS HOUSE, IKEJA, LAGOS STATE ON TUESDAY, 30TH AUGUST 2022.
The 1-Day Capacity Building Workshop was organized to build the
capacity of Civil Society Organizations and Media Executives and
practitioners on prioritizing Anti-Corruption and Accountability
issues during the upcoming 2023 General Elections in Lagos State. In
attendance were members of Civil Society Organizations (CSOs), Human
Rights Activists, Media Executives/Practitioners, Representatives of
The Centre for Anti-Corruption and Open Leadership, CACOL, in
continuation of its project on prioritizing anti-corruption and
accountability issues during the upcoming 2023 elections in Lagos
state held a Capacity Building workshop with the theme: Corruption,
Election and the Troubled Democracy: The Role of the Media and CSOs
for members of Civil Society Groups and the Media.
The anti-corruption organization’s Chairman, Debo Adeniran in his
opening remarks said the workshop was organized to let both the media
and members of the civil society organizations know that they have
very serious roles to play preparatory to the forthcoming general
elections in the State. According to him “there is an urgent need to
set agenda for political candidates in the area of anti-corruption and
social inclusion. In order for us to have the moral courage to ask
questions we need to make deliberate efforts to ram down their
throats that, there should be an agenda for anti-corruption exercises,
social inclusion if eventually they win election and they have to show
it to us, in fact everybody must be carried along”
The first facilitator at the workshop ‘Wale Adeoye, Executive
Director, Journalist for Democratic Rights (JODER) who presented his
paper on “2023: Electioneering Activities: Setting the Agenda for
Political Actors Through Reportage and Conversations”, said the media
has a traditional role that includes to inform, educate, entertain and
set agenda for Local, National and Global Sustainable Development
Goals. He opined that these responsibilities should be discharged to
the public guided by objectivity, truth and transparency in the
promotion of the greatest good of the greatest number. He went further
to trace the historical root of the media in Nigeria starting from
December, 1859 when the first Newspaper, Iwe Irohin was printed in
Abeokuta, now the capital of Ogun State. He highlighted the roles of
the Media in Democracy and Good Governance and also mentioned some
threats to media freedom in the country. He rounded up his paper with
the summary of agenda expected of the Media to set preparatory to the
forthcoming elections, which include:
• Agenda for peace and stability, sustainable development and
livelihood based on truth, the rule of law and objectivity.
• Agenda for content and form of governance which includes but not
limited to environmental, economic, political and cultural issues.
• Agenda for reporting diversity, ethnic minorities, the national
question, and terrorism in a historic context without overlooking the class
variables. The media should not only deepen the debate but also enrich
• Agenda for the drastic reduction of corruption, electoral violence,
work for ethnic conflict prevention and peacebuilding.
• Agenda for the physically unable and the challenges they face in
assessing polling booths, politics, power and the dividends of
• Women and Gender issues, Youth political and economic empowerment
while challenging under-aged voting, exclusion and ensuring electorally
• The administration of public media institutions to reflect the
content and form of ownership.
• Corruption in the electoral process.
The second facilitator at the workshop Mr. Akinbode Oluwafemi,
Executive Director, Corporate Accountability & Public Participation
Africa (CAPPA), represented by Zikora Ibeh in his presentation titled
“2023 Electioneering Activities: Asking the Right Questions, Demanding
SMART Deliverables” opined that “no doubt, the 2023 general elections
will be a defining moment for Nigeria. If done right, the elections
can help consolidate Nigeria’s democracy and serve as a shinning
example for the West African sub-region which faces the grim reality
of a recrudescence of usurpation of power by the military and other
anti-democratic forces. Hence, this kind of initiative undertaken by
CACOL is essential to help build citizens’ civic awareness of their
civic obligations and capacity to engage critical stakeholders to
ensure not only the integrity of the elections but also to guarantee
that the government that emerges from this exercise works for the
public good.” He identified some broad categories of questions
citizens must always ask candidates and elected public officials,
among which are:
• What is to be done? What are the issues?
• How will it be done? i.e., budgeting process, mode of implementation
(Public, privatization, or PPP), contract system, or public works?
(Lekki Epe Tollgate)
• Who will pay for it? i.e., will it lead to increased taxation? (E.g.
Tollgates for New Roads)
• How will women, youth and other vulnerable segments of the society
The last paper at the workshop titled “Social Inclusion: Sine qua non
for Peaceful Co-existence Beyond 2023” was presented by Debo Adeniran
the Chairman of CACOL. He defined social inclusion as “a process by
which efforts are made to ensure equal opportunities for all,
regardless of their background, in order to enable full and active
participation in all aspects of life, including civic, social,
economic, and political activities, as well as participation in
decision-making processes.” He identified various groups of people who
are mostly excluded in the country among which are women and girls,
people living in rural communities, persons with disabilities, youth,
older persons, ethnic and religious minorities, migrants and
internally displaced people among others. He urged members of Civil
Society Organizations and the media to play an active role in
engendering Social Inclusion by becoming a voice for social inclusion
in their various spaces, asking political candidates for their stance
on issues bothering on social inclusion and to collaborate and form
coalitions to advocate for social inclusion.
Thereafter, participants were given the opportunity to comment and ask
questions on the various topics treated at the workshop. Most of the
participants commended CACOL for organizing the workshop saying there
is no better time than now to equip the media and the civil society
groups for the important task ahead. They also highlighted some of
what they have learnt from the workshop, and promised to implement
what they have learnt at the workshop.
Director, Administration and Programmes, CACOL
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