Hijab/Church Garments Controversy in Osun State
Exploring War and Peace Journalism in the Punch and Daily Trust Coverage
Conflicts precipitated by religious discords have resulted in the deaths of thousands of people and destruction of property in Nigeria. It brews mutual suspicion among its heterogeneous citizens. Ultimately, their cordial coexistence and progress in most facets of life are affected. In all these, the media is a stakeholder whether as a promoter of peace or exacerbater of tension and division. This research therefore explored 122 editions of The Punch and Daily Trust to ascertain how these national dailies are responding to the tenets of peace journalism enunciated by Johan Galtung and other scholars in their approaches and overall coverage of the Hijab/Church garments controversy in Osun state. Using content analysis, census, framing and agenda-setting as methodological and theoretical frameworks respectively, the study found that these newspapers framed their articles more in line with peace journalism (55.5%) than war journalism (44.4%). But the selective emphasis on differences-oriented frame in The Punch (45.4%) and victim-villain frame in the Daily Trust (60%) confirmed the widely held belief that Nigerian newspapers cleave to regional and religious sentiment with regard to significance attached to issues and events in their coverage. All these are arguably a corollary of political-economic and professional factors detrimental to peace.