The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr Geoffrey Onyeama, has called on the media to continually maintain professionalism and accurately represent the image of the country.
Onyeama made the call at a one-day seminar for journalists accredited to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Abuja on Tuesday.
The minister said that it was important to evaluate the role of the media, adding that their contributions were pertinent to the growth of national and global development.
“The way we disseminate news has completely been transformed in the electronic age and social media is now a huge force.
“Sometimes we do get that impression in Nigeria that some of our journalists are just ready to be directed on what to write for whatever reasons; it should not be that way.
“It is a heroic profession and we cannot thank journalists enough for the role they play in our world to maintain and enforce democracy and in defence of human rights.
He also urged journalists accredited to the ministry to always ensure they publish information correctly to avoid diplomatic skirmishes.
“Diplomacy is very sensitive if you do not get it right in the media, it can affect relationships with countries.”
He further urged enhanced partnership with the media to enhance Nigeria’s relationship with the rest of the world.
The seminar had as its theme: “Understanding the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for effective reportage”.
Presentations made by resource persons covered areas of ICT revolution and its impact on diplomacy; Nigeria’s foreign policy and the role of the Nigerian media and understanding diplomatic terms and protocols.
Other paper presentations included the objectives of news reportage and national interest and exploring opportunities and benefits in diplomatic reporting.