Adekunle Adebajo, Lagos
Yesterday, January 30 2016, saw the historic convergence of campus editors and student journalists at the Centre of Excellence, Department of Mass Communication in the University of Lagos. The delegates came from various tertiary institutions in the country including the University of Ibadan, Obafemi Awolowo Univerisity, University of Lagos, University of Ilorin, Ladoke Akintola University of Techonology, Ahmadu Bello University, Crawford University and Tai Solarin Univeristy of Education.
Many of the participants had arrived in the state of Lagos the previous day for the Pre-Summit Conference during which they got to interact and network. The programme, themed ‘21st Century Campus Journalism: Issues, Challenges and Prospects’, was notably the first of its kind to be held under a national body, the National Association of Nigerian Campus Editors (NANCE).
The event was graced by such dignitaries as Mr Sam Omatseye, Chairman of the Nation Newspaper’s Editorial Board; Mr Lekan Otufodunrin, Online Manager of the Nation Newspaper; Mr Raphael I. Bowoto, the Deputy Director of Programmes at the Lagos Chapter of the National Orientation Agency and Dr Sunday who represented the Chairman of UNILAG 103.1 FM.
While delivering his address, Mr Lekan Otufodunrin highlighted and illustrated various rules contained in the Code of Conduct guiding Nigerian journalism. He listed as part of the challenges bedevilling campus journalism the lack of interest from students, obstacles posed by school managements and the lack of training.
He explained that with training, a student may proceed to become a successful journalist, regardless of his non-journalism-related discipline of study. To corroborate this point, he cited the examples of Dele Momodu, the progenitor and owner of Ovation Magazine, Segun Adeyeye and Fisayo Soyombo of The Cables who happens to be graduate of Animal Husbandry. Further, Mr Otufodunrin mentioned that the perfection of writing skills is one of the big prospects of journalism.
Mr Sam Omatseye was presented an Award of Excellence by the NANCE Chairman, Mr Olanrewaju Oyedeji. This award, Mr Oyedeji noted, was for his standing by the association and campus journalism generally. In his reaction, Mr Omatseye thanked the association for the gesture. He thereafter advised the delegates to understand that there is no royal way to success. He substantiated this with life instances of Princess Diana and Thomas Edison who he quoted as saying success is 1% inspiration and 99% perspiration. “If you don’t try to dare failure, you will not succeed”; he said as part of his closing remarks.
The event did not end without the winning of plaques and prizes. Mr Ali Toyin Abdul, defeating 12 other entries, emerged as the Best Campus Editor for year 2015. Also, Ladoke Akintola University of technology was declared winner of the Political Report Contest beating OAU, UNILAG, UNILORIN and UI. Asides these, every one of the delegates left with something to remember as certificates of participation were handed to them by the personages. It is most certain that all now have their eyes fixed upon the next edition of the Campus Editors Summit which most likely will be held in a different geo-political zone.
Adekunle Adebajo, Lagos