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Scholars push for positive media coverage of Islam, Muslims

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education, media coveragePROMINENT scholars, media professionals and Muslim students, last weekend, graced the launch of the third and fourth books of the “Islam and Media Series” written by Rasheed Abubakar, a newspaper columnist.

The books, titled “Media Narratives of Muslims in Nigeria: Facts and Fallacies” and “Islam and Modern Vices: Issues and Concerns in the News,” were unveiled at the University of Lagos (UNILAG), Akoka.

The chairman on the occasion, a former National Commissioner of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and chairman of UNILAG Muslim Community, Professor Lai Olurode, commended the author  for his audacity to write on a subject which he said was not likely to appeal to conventional readers.

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“It is not easy to write on the subject. If he had just thought of the gains, if he was materialistic, he might not want to commit himself to such writings. What has driven him to do this great work is his passion for Islam.

“This is a very strong jihad, and he needs our support. We need to promote the literacy of Islam, the religion that is poorly understood, even by the media practitioners who claim to be literates but are stark illiterates of what Islam symbolises,” Professor Olurode said.

The first book reviewer, Professor AbdulRazaq Kilani, who was represented by Ustadh AbdulWarith Solanke, a journalist with the Voice of Nigeria (VON), said Islam, a faith professed by over 1.6 billion people worldwide, deserves a better treatment in the media than what currently obtains.

The professor of Islamic Studies at the University of Port Harcourt noted that Islam, a civilisation which has spanned many centuries, is one of the biggest stories in the media.

He, however, noted that in most cases, such stories are misrepresentations of Islam and they are about scapegoating the Muslims. He added that many journalists in Nigeria appeared to have taken Mark Twain’s quote – “first get the facts. You can distort them later” – as their foundational principle when dealing with Islam and Muslims.

The post Scholars push for positive media coverage of Islam, Muslims appeared first on Tribune Online.

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