Our attention has been drawn to a barrage of reactions trailing a news item published on www.calitown.com on Wednesday, October 12, 2017 with the headline “WARRING ABI AND USUMUTONG COMMUNITIES ASKED TO SINK DIFFERENCES”.
Particularly, the last paragraph of the news item, “… Meanwhile, a text message received by www.caliitown.com, late Wednesday evening however insists that, “…after the withdrawal of troops, Ediba may invade Usumutong again within days as build-up (sic) of arms and personnel continues unless government does something urgently”. We were however unable to ascertain the authenticity of this information at press time but police sources in Calabar maintain that the message appears unfounded and misleading” has offended some of our esteemed readers.
As a direct response to these reactions conveyed through phone calls, text messages, electronic mails and even personal contact, we responsively state and affirm the following:
- As a credible news platform, trusted by several well-meaning people in Nigeria and abroad, we have overtime demonstrated more than a passing commitment to ensuring that our news items succinctly and impartially tell two sides of every story.
- In reporting any story, we take no sides but put accurate facts in the court of public opinion, bearing in mind that our primary news reporting responsibility is to the public and not an individual or group of individuals.
- It is perhaps important to state that in this particular instance, our story was not designed to portray the Ediba community in Abi Local Government Area of Cross River State or any other community as the aggressor in the regrettable communal clash between Ediba and Usumutong communities. Those who felt and still feel this way deserve our prayers and a moral charge from US to THEM to work at bringing this unfortunate clash to an end.
- It is also important to point out that no other news platform, within and outside Nigeria, has through her reportage, drawn government and the world’s attention to this unfortunate crisis like calitown.com has done. In fact, when the last clash in August 2017 occurred, our publisher, IWARA IWARA, was the first to draw the attention of the CRS Commissioner of Police, CP Hafiz M. Inuwa and the CRS Security Adviser, Jude Ngaji, to the clash. Inuwa and Ngaji quickly acted on this information and ensured that security personnel were immediately deployed to the area; they can be contacted to verify this information.
- Because we, like several well-meaning persons within and outside both communities believe that attention must not be drawn away from this painful conflict and several others in Cross River State, our determined commitment to responsible news reporting will not waver.
- Finally, we must draw the ATTENTION of those ‘aggrieved’ to the last sentence in the last paragraph of the news item pointing to the particular fact that Police sources in Calabar had maintained clearly to calitown.com that the said build-up of arms was a mere allegation, after we notified the reading public, based on information texted to us. We will continue to pray that caution and vigilance will be the catch phrases as we all work to ensure that this crisis is solved once and for all.
We will continue to serve you all … News, Here, Everytime!
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