The Editor of Unilorin Watch newspaper, a training publication of the Department of Mass Communication, University of Ilorin, Oso Olasunkanmi, a 400 level student, has won the Editor-in-Chief of the Year award at the Campus Journalism Award recently held in Abuja.

Also, another training publication of the Department, Scoop Magazine, edited by Tomori Uriel, a 300 level student, won the Campus Magazine of the Year award at the same event. 

The Award ceremony, organised by Youths' Digest, in collaboration with PR Nigeria and Image Merchant Promotion, received entries from institutions across the country.

According to the Editor and Organizer of the ceremony, the award, themed “Curbing Hate Speech on Social Media”, was instituted to encourage young journalists to spreading the message of love, peace and harmony through their communication skills. It also serve as means of encourage student-journalists who have made their marks in various fields of writing and journalism.

In his presentation at the event, the Guest Speaker, Mr. Dapo Olorunyomi, noted that the more democratic a society is, the more news it should have.

 Mr. Olorunyomi, who is also the Publisher of Premium Times newspaper, gave explicit definitions of journalism and highlighted its three key elements, which, according to him, are accuracy and truthfulness, verification and independence of the newsman and agency.

 The Premium Times boss described hate speech as any speech that attacks a person or a group of people on the basis of religion, race, gender etc. 

Reeling out statistics, Mr. Olorunyomi pointed out that 2.1 billion people use Facebook, 1.5 billion people use YouTube, 1.3 billion people use Whatsapp, and others, all on a daily basis, noting that the biggest challenge people have, is how they consume content.

The renowned journalist identified some measures of curbing hate speech to include proper education for media experts to be able to distinguish between hate speech and freedom of expression.

In his own remarks at the event, the Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Mr. Femi Adesina, encouraged the students not to relent in their effort of being catalysts the development of their society while calling for stiffer laws on those who indulge in use of hate speeches.

Meanwhile, the Ag. Head of the Department of Mass Communication, Dr. (Mrs.) Saudat Abdulbaqi, has congratulated the students on their achievements, describing the awards as rewards for hard work.

Receiving the awards in her office from the awardees penultimate Tuesday (March 27, 2018), Dr. Abdulbaqi urged the students not to rest on their oars but to put in more efforts with a view to becoming the best in whatsoever they are doing as the reward will always come.

The presentation was witnessed by the Coordinator of the Unilorin Watch, Dr. Lambe Mustapha and the Lecturer in Charge and Editorial Chairman of Scoop Magazine, Dr. Lukman Azeez.