By Ibrahim Aboki, CITAD Bauchi
As part of its effort to improve ICT literacy among the public, the Centre for Information Technology and Development(CITAD) in conjunction with Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Bauchi state chapter conducted a three day workshop for journalists on ICT for media professionals at Professor Iya Abubakar Community Resource Centre , Bauchi. The training took place between Thursday 26 toSaturday 28 January, 2012.
The opening ceremony of the workshop has witnessed the present of many dignitaries in the state including; the Emir of Dass, Alhaji Usman Bilyaminu Usman who was the Royal Father of the occasion, the Bauchi State Head of Service, Mr. Abdon gin as Chairman of the Occasion, the commissioner for information, Alhaji Umar Saleh who was the Guest of Honour, the General Manager Bauchi Television and the Secretary to Bauchi State Government, represented by the Director-General, Bauchi ICT Directorate, Alhaji Mohammed Lawal who declared the workshop opened. Other guests at the occasion included the, NUJ Chairman Bauchi state chapter, Dahiru Mohammed Garba, the National Vice Chairman (Zone E) of the NUJ, Alhaji Mukhtar Gidado, Chief Press secretary to the Bauchi State Governor, Mr. Ishola Micheal, Press secretary to Bauchi State Deputy Governor (Abdullahi Wunti), among others. While delivering his welcome address, the NUJ chairman said that the workshop was part of the efforts of the union to build the capacity of its members. In his own remarks the Royal Father noted that no journalist now could function effectively without ICT and therefore urged the participants to make good use of the opportunity. The Executive Director of CITAD explained the themes and components of the workshop. In declaring the workshop opened the Secretary to the State Government said that the Bauchi State Government was committed to assisting journalists in the State so as to ensure that they perform their duty of informing and enlightening the public. He added that the government was always ready to assist the NUJ as demonstrated by the resumption of work in the NUJ Press Centre.
After the opening ceremony, Mallam Ahmad A. Yakassai took the first session ‘ICT literacy’ during which he explained the concept of ICTs, tracing its historical development, dismeentns, components and uses. This was to prepare the participants’ mind to better understanding of role of ICT in the journalism profession. The next session, ‘Professional Development’, which focused on skills and technical know-how required of every professional journalist; was undertaken by Mallam Dalhatu Yola. He dwelled on new ways of writing news and techniques of conducting interviews. The last session for the day saw Mallam Ahmad Yakasai back taking another session, ‘Advanced ICT skills’,. This was skill training on advanced uses of Microsoft word package.
On the second day, Sufyan Lawal Kabo, a film editor and director, took the session ‘media work tools’. He elaborated on video format, aspect ratio and editing and took the participants through various aspects of editing of video, sound and pictures. Mallam Isyaku Garba later facilitated the session, ‘online document and data storage’. He noted that media organizations have problem of storage of documents such as tapes and papers and observed that in electronic formats such documents could be stored online to be retrieved anytime and anywhere needed. He cited examples of both free and commercial data storage sitesas well as demonstrated how to use them and store documents online. The final session for the day was office mail handling facilitated by Mallam Ahmad Yakassai.
On the third day, which was also marked as the last day, Mallam Isyaku Garba took the sessions throughout the day. He first started with online translation, followed by social media and finally Microsoft PowerPoint.
The second to the last session was devoted to sharing of experiences by the participants. They appreciated the ICT skills they have acquired and how they would use it in their journalistic works. They also wished the workshop had extended beyond the time space, for, according to them ‘the workshop is more interesting’. Some commended NUJ for organizing the workshop, and urged the NUJ to keep organizing workshop of such kind. A participant wanted a session to focus on photography as some of the participants were into photo journalism. Mallam Ahmad Yakasai wrapped up the workshop by thanking God and urging the participants to put in to practice and always keep updating what they have learnt in order to build their own capacity.
During the closing session CITAD executive director, Engr. Y.Z. Ya’u thanked the participants for their active participants, interest and their determination to learn. He described the training as beginning, urging the participants that now was the time for them to learn more in order to make effective use of ICTs in their professional duties. He also thanked the NUJ for the partnership and expressed the readiness of CITAD to continue to work with the NUJ in the human capacity development of its members.