Bernice Sanusi (PhD), Becky Utulu


This study examined an analysis of selected newspapers coverage of development news in Nigeria. While discussions and findings regarding media role have been mixed and inconclusive, recent study has characterized the press in Nigeria as ineffective in news dissemination and analysis, and described its relationship with governments as controversial and antagonistic. Thus, newspapers when properly conceived can be more than reporting mere events to becoming an instigator of development. The objectives was to ascertain the volume of coverage given to development issues in Nigeria by selected newspapers from January to August 2020, to determine the level of significance attached to development news in Nigeria by the selected newspapers from January to August 2020 and to examine the type of report that received more attention by the selected newspapers in their coverage of development issues in Nigeria. Agenda Setting theory and Media Development theory was adopted for this study. Stratified and purposive sampling technique was also adopted for this study. Content analysis was adopted as a method for this study with a code sheet as an instrument for data collection from four selected newspapers (Punch, The Nation, Guardian and Vanguard) were 192 Nigeria development news was examined from January to August 2020. Findings showed that the volume of coverage for development news was low when compared to other stories in the selected newspapers.  Findings also showed that there was no much significance attached to the coverage of development news in the period under study. Furthermore, news stories received more attention by the selected newspapers in their coverage of development issues in Nigeria.  Lastly, it was discovered that majority of the stories were covered as national interest. Low coverage was given to human interest stories with a magnitude of only 26 (13%) by the two newspapers within the period under study. The study concluded that the press should give adequate attention in the coverage of development news in the country, as well as provide human interest angle to stories in order to tackle the state of underdevelopment in the country. It recommended that newspapers should make it a point of duty to update the public on the strategies and measures adopted by the government to handle development projects in the country and significance should be given to coverage of development news by the selected newspapers. 


Newspapers, Press, Coverage, Development news

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