By Obinna Unaeze
The International Centre for Investigative Reporting (ICIR) and International Budget Partnership (IBP) has begun a three-day training for 21 journalists on investigative and data journalism.
Mr Dayo Aiyetan, ICIR Executive Director, on Tuesday in Abuja said the training would expose the participants on covering activities of Small holder Women Farmers of Nigeria (SWOFON).
“I want to thank the ICIR, IBP and all of you here for collaborating to make this programme a reality,” he said.
Aiyetan said that the programme aimed at boosting agriculture and ensuring food security for the nation.
The Director urged the participants to observe the COVID-19 protocols during the training and field work.
Similarly, Mr Austin Ndiokwelu, Country Manager, IBP said the organisation places the budget of any state in public interest in a transparent way.
“It is all about strengthening public accountability. Journalists must help the SWOFON to build evidence of their challenges and achievement,” he said.
Also, Joshua Arogunyo, a resource person who introduced the SWOFON charter of demand to the journalists, said that the document tends to bring out the challenges of the women farmers in the country.
Arogunyo said that the document is urging government at various levels to provide women friendly equipment for the women farmers.
He said that there was need to get government to remove bottlenecks to ensure that the women get soft loans and grants to enable them meet their farming obligation.
Dr Theophilus Abbah, another resource person who dwelt on news reporting, said that during story planning a journalist must research his subject, make a list of persons to interview and make a list of questions to be asked.
Aiyetan, also a resource person said that under introduction to investigative journalism a journalist must use evidence to substantiate a story.
“You must carry out enough research on what you want to do before going to the field,” he said.
Mrs Ibukun Emiola, a Correspondent with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) and one of the trainees said that the training was impactful as it exposed her on how best to cover the women farmers.
“I think the training prepared me on how to help the women farmers have a voice in agriculture,” she said.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that SWOFON is operating in the six states of Anambra, Niger, Nasarawa, Lagos, Oyo, Jigawa and Abuja.