Evolution of the Media in a Capital City: The Case of the Rise of Abuja as a News Centre

Salisu Suleiman


This paper investigates the sourcing of news, through the prism of geography. It locates Abuja, the growing capital city of Nigeria as a case, arguing that like most other things, news sources are usually constructed affairs. Rather than being an absolute affair, a news source is a creation of intermixing variables, which grow over time and space; and which can increase or decline in the performance of this role, with changes in circumstances. The paper evaluates the growth of Abuja as a prime news centre from the time it was named as a future capital, up to the time a definite date of relocation was announced, and from when it became the seat of presidential leadership, to present date. While the paper reviews the value of the city as a veritable source of stories for the local and international media, it notes the different tendencies of the news reports. This is in the sense that while many are regular and heartening, various others rightly reflect the perversions in the land. In this case, another kind of balancing in news reporting is implicated: one that focuses on the good and the bad (not just the other side, whether good or bad) even without a deliberate attempt at doing so. The city produces more than enough good, and then a corresponding mess to balance up the former, in a back and forth approach, in what is symptomatic of an unbiased reporting of a news centre.

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