In Commemoration of UN International Day for Universal Access to Information on the 28th of September every year, leading social research group, NOIPolls has presented a report showing that Radio set still remains the popular means of communications even as social media is beginning to make serious inroads.
According to the UN, “The aim of the day is to ensure public access to information and protect fundamental freedoms in accordance with national legislation and international agreements. The International Day is an important opportunity for stakeholders to strengthen access to information as well as emphasizing the importance of open government information transparency and accountability.”
The right of access to information is a fundamental right of all Nigerians to access information held by public establishments. The protection of the right of access to information is equally vital to democracy and a driver of good governance, accountability, development and the upholding of other human rights.
NOIPolls, in its latest report conducted in August 2018 revealed that Radio, internet/social media and Television were the major avenues where the citizens get their information from, among other sources.
The poll further showed that the internet/social media platforms had experienced a significant increase in usage over the eleven years period in view. This is not surprising given the role that modern information technologies, such as Internet and mobile phones can play in information gathering, countering false and inciting messages, alerting the people on security issues and inspiring them to act towards finding solutions to problems of development facing their societies cannot be overemphasized.
Findings from the most recent poll shows that the main source of daily news for Nigerians is radio (39 percent). This Implies that a larger fraction of Nigerians depends on the news desks of various radio stations within their localities for information on happenings in the country. Other sources of daily news for Nigerians includes; Internet/social media (28 percent), Television (26 percent), Word of mouth (5 percent), Newspapers (2 percent) and community town hall meetings (1 percent).
Furthermore, trend analysis from previous polls conducted in past years revealed a dramatic increase in the use of internet/social media.
Otherwise, the upswing of new technology has introduced several options for getting information which have continued to compete with traditional media. The eleven-year assessment revealed that internet/social media as a source of daily information in Nigeria has increased from 2 percent in 2017 to 28 percent in 2018.
This indicates a huge growth in its usage in Nigeria as a source of information, hence necessitating better regulation of this medium. Generally, over the years, radio has remained the most common source of information to Nigerians. Also, 2018 findings revealed that more Nigerians get access to their daily news from internet/social media than television and newspaper.
In conclusion, the poll results established that radio remains the most common source of information for most Nigerians. Trend analysis from previous polls conducted in past years revealed a dramatic increase in the use of internet/social media as a common source of information.