Mass Media Management of the Inter-Ethnic Conflict In Warri Delta State, Nigeria: An Evaluative Study

Grade Imoh


This paper critically evaluates the activities of Delta Broadcasting Service (DBS) Warri in trying to prevent, resolve and transform the inter-ethnic conflicts in Warri in 2003. Using content analysis and structured individual interviews with two (2) policy and decision makers, four (4) producers and programme staff purposively sampled from the Delta Broadcasting Service (DBS) Warri, data was collected (with the aid of a checklist) on variables such as; (i) the role of the state government in the resolution and transformation of the conflict (ii) the level of conflict prevention preparedness in DBS (iii) the role of DBS in the resolution of the conflict (iv) how the media covered the conflict (v) the plans in place to build peace and prevent future conflict and (vi) the factors acting as constraints to the effectiveness of the media in the prevention, resolution and transformation of the conflict. Findings show that the role of the media (DBS) in the prevention, resolution and transformation of the conflict has been minimal and underplayed. There was no organizational capacity for conflict prevention and resolution. DBS was not able to objectively manage the conflict due to the gate keeping function of its owners and inadequate fiscal, human and technical capacity of the media organization, to design, produce and transmit programmes. In order to strengthen the conflict management capacity of the media establishment, there is need for (i) greater involvement and commitment of media executives to conflict management (ii) policy support to a proactive and transformational approach to mass media programming and (iii) institutionalization and organizational transformation, that includes the formation of strategic alliances between the media and NGOs, the private sector and relevant government agencies, to facilitate funding, research, capacity building, infrastructural development and information exchange.


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ISSN (Paper)2224-3267 ISSN (Online)2224-3275

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