Ebonyi State Governor Chief David Umahi has tendered an unreserved apology to the correspondents of The SUN and Vanguard newspapers in the State, Mr Chijioke Agwu and Mr Peter Okutu respectively, and called on them and their media organizations to partner his government to develop the State.
Governor Umahi had on Wednesday last week barred the two journalists from entering Ebonyi Government House and all government facilities ‘for life’ following reports the duo did which the governor considered offensive.
The governor’s pronouncements had been drawing a flurry of condemnations with civil society groups contending that no governor has the right to ban journalists or anyone else from accessing public facilities under a democratic government.
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But in a live broadcast in Abakaliki on Tuesday, Governor Umahi described the incident as unfortunate, adding that he acted out of anger.
He, however, urged journalists to always report with facts while bearing in mind the peculiarities of the State.
He said: ”I have directed that The SUN and Vanguard reporters be invited to join us. The unfortunate incident with the press was not intentional. But I am asking everybody to disregard what has happened. Because we are all partners in progress and let us work together. But I will advise that you, please crosscheck your information before publication. There are some certain write-ups that people are not happy about. But I have said please let everybody down tools in love and work together.
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“I specifically asked that The SUN and Vanguard reporters be invited because as a father when you beat a child with one hand, you bring the child back with another hand. I believe strongly that if anybody wants to intentionally bring you down he can’t pull you down standing, he will certainly go down with you. And you may even rise above of him. But the single way to be happy in life is to be happy with success. I want to invite the press for partnership and also ask them to also please help us build the State.”
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