Nigeria, CNN and Jeff Koinange’s Dismissal

by Paul I. Adujie

Nigeria is vindicated! Minister Frank Nweke Jr. is vindicated and those of us, who did not accept or fall for CNN’s Jeff Koinange’s melodramatic, staged and contrived reports about the Movement for the Emancipation of Niger Delta or MEND, have all been vindicated as well! It is official, Jeff Koinange no longer in the employ of CNN!

As it now turns out, Jeff Koinange has admitted to third parties, half in boast and half in jest, that he was actually paid to contrive the MEND stories that he featured on CNN!

Jeff Koinange no longer works for CNN, this, according to CNN on May 29, 2007. It is now public knowledge that Jeff Koinange through CNN, committed unfair, unethical, unbalanced and offensive attacks against Nigerians and Nigeria. All in clear violation of journalistic ethics. This calls to question, CNN’s credibility, ethics and journalistic integrity! I am simply elated that Nigeria and those who defended her at the time have been vindicated! Jeff Koinange had his unethical journalistic albatross hanging around his neck, and in addition, there are also well-publicized documented trysts that he had, while actively married. One of his extra marital relationships involved a woman who was in the middle of self-promotion for a book she wrote about political intrigues in Kenya.

The lady was said to have proposed a ménage à trios between herself, her daughter and CNN Mister integrity, the unethical Jeff Koinange! This is the same guy who was quick to engage in sanctions preachments against Nigeria on CNN, both offensively and unfairly.

And yet, some Nigerians rushed, into embarrassingly feeble justifications of CNN and Koinange’s misconducts directed at Nigeria! Thankfully, we now know the truth, Nigeria is vindicated!

Thankfully, the current leader of Nigeria, President Yar’Adua has been emphasizing and reemphasizing the crucial importance of resolving the Niger Delta crises, which in effect, will make violent agitations by MEND and any other militants, unnecessary and irrelevant. Nigerians know the issues in Nigeria and the Niger Delta in particular. The new president has made Niger Delta top priority. Nigerians and Nigeria never needed journalistic coups and scoops to determine what are challenges and the solutions to them are! We particularly reject in resentment, Jeff Koinange and CNN’s stage-managed journalism, in which they engage in melodrama, sensationalism and falsehoods!

We wrote Between Dr. Abati, CNN, Nigerians & Nigeria
and in it, we argued that “Dr. Abati in writing Between CNN and Nigeria, he misapplied his skills, his education, his talents and his advocacy skills and worse he did all these in support of CNN, a media organization that has created a cottage industry excoriating Nigeria! Is Dr. Abati seeking some sort of award from the Americans, a Pulitzer perhaps?”

Between CNN and Nigeria written by Dr. Abati has been hotly debated online and there has been a paragraph of that article that is often quoted or excerpted by most Nigerians responding to Dr. Abati’s opinion and it is, where he intoned that the folks at CNN would be having a field day in hilarities, as they will be laughing Nigeria and especially the current political leaders scornfully for canceling the contract with CNN to air the “Heart of Africa” Project concerning Nigeria’s international image.

First of all, I did not know that Dr. Abati is a mind-reader and that he engages in clairvoyance! I do not understand how he could arrive at such conclusion about CNN reaction in scornful laughter? What manner of idle conjectures by Dr. Abati? Secondly, Nigeria paid for a service, and the essence and core of that service entails portrayals of Nigeria in the best lights. CNN accepted that deal and payments to carry such contract into effect.

The same CNN, in the past year and more importantly, after signing the contract with Nigeria which required CNN to portray Nigeria in best lights, CNN nevertheless proceeded to portray Nigeria in the worst of lights! CNN took actions that are inconsistent with and made nonsense of its subsisting obligations to and with Nigeria and Nigeria was supposed to bury her head in shame and, throw hands in the air helplessly, and continue to pay CNN, at least going by Dr. Abati’s logic? How can that make any sense to any reasonable person? How could that possibly make sense to any Nigerian at home or abroad? How could that make any sense to a journalist cum lawyer of Dr. Abati’s stature? It sure does not make any sense to me!

The policy and strategy of the current federal government of Nigeria appears to be, to avoid full-frontal military assault on MEND and other militants in the Niger Delta. This is informed by the fact that negotiations and political solutions are infinitely better than military solutions. Jeff Koinange of CNN and by extension, Dr. Abati of The Guardian Newspapers, has taken this attitude on the part of our government, to treat MEND and other militants, rather gingerly to avoid needless bloodshed. After all, members of MEND and other militants are our people, Nigerians! Our government did not want to escalate or exacerbate the challenges on the ground, by focusing on use of military force

That well-informed avoidance of bloodshed, is now taken by Abati and Koinange, as fear on the part of Nigeria’s military? Our military that has been to the toughest of peace-keeping missions in Burma, Yugoslavia, Sierra Leone, Liberia, Sudan just to name a few, our military could not go when a braided-hair city boy Koinange could go? Haba! Abati wrote as if whatever he says and wants, are sacrosanct! Hear Abati, “What the Federal Government has done is to question the integrity of the CNN and that of its reports, reporters and editors.

It has taken the additional step of blackmailing CNN by asking state governments in Nigeria to withdraw adverts from the station” Dr. Abati felt obligated to describe the actions of our federal government as blackmail! Dr. Abati sounded as if he is a mouthpiece and megaphone for CNN and MEND! Hear him again, “Those hood-wearing boys on CNN mean business. It is the Nigerian government that is joking with danger.

The CNN report conveyed an impression of the danger that Nigeria is joking with, and if the truth must be told, Koinange and his crew deserve praise for courage in the face of danger”

Why is Dr. Abati giddily ridiculing Nigerians and Nigeria on behalf of CNN?

Someone should inform Abati that it is not only Nigeria’s federal government that is offended by CNN’s unfair, unethical, unbalanced and offensive attacks against Nigerians and Nigeria. Millions of Nigerians are offended and I am one of them!

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sauL September 13, 2011 - 8:11 am

Fact is that there was a Problem in that area where Cnn was.Of course the government will/would be uneasy with such reports which make it look like it is Not doing its work.Anyway cnn should keepup its good work,but did somebody have to loose his job or is there something else that we Do Not know?

Ulonna Inyama October 24, 2007 - 10:25 am

Paul has a legitimate complaint as unethical reporting 's causing more harm than we care to pay attention to, all over the world. Like anyone who's passionate about an issue…… Nigeria's image in his case, his judgement is bound to appear tilted in favour of his arguement.

hezron June 17, 2007 - 4:20 am

paul's concerns arise from a well-informed, issue-oriented mind and he's obviously and justifiably unhappy with unethical reporting which has become a hallmark of many of our journalist for personal milage and fame. the world will definitely be a better place without that kind of journalism.

Karanja- Kenya June 14, 2007 - 10:22 am

I partially agree with you CCN do stage managed some news but we have to accept the reality on the ground and and find the solution. Lets not be comfortable punching the light side as the gosts of war will continue being with us. CNN keep up the good work but uphold journalism ethics.

Alexis Onome-Egborge June 8, 2007 - 11:27 am

I quite agree with you. Nigerians should larn to look at the issue of larger politics. CNN and it's reporting has been that way for a while and we only cry because just now, it's our story. More Nigerians should write instead of being local arm-chair 'agreeists', and embittered patrons in diaspora.

Emeka June 4, 2007 - 8:32 am

I do not agree with your views about that report. Jeff took risk and equally endangered his life on that trip. Don't crucify him please. CNN is doing well.

Lesley June 3, 2007 - 4:03 pm

Are you for real?


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