Mass communication is defined as messages directed towards a large
group of people using a mass medium. It involves disseminating
information to a large, diverse, homogenous/heterogeneous audience.
Mass communication is made possible through the help of mass media.
That is to say mass media makes mass communication a reality. Mass
media includes television, radio, newspaper, magazine etc.
For every human society the successful conduct of her
internal/external affairs depends largely on the extent of the
reliability of government apparatus and the government successfully
communicating, understanding and accepting themselves in a mutual and
symbiotic relationship”- Obaze .A et al (2004:1)
The need for information is such that man can hardly function or
determine his course of life with out communication. On account of
this, the influential role of the media is cited in her caprice to
direct, redirect, and shoulder the course of altitude change and
instilling/building public perception towards societal affair.
There is no modern society that can dispense with the press
especially newspapers. The newspapers especially to places where there
are no radio stations rapidly spread important news. The newspapers
give us reliable information about towns and countries. Many social
tools are exposed in one newspaper to attract the attention of the
government, police and the citizens as a whole so that such evils may be
immediately combated. Many articles written by intelligent people and
carried by newspapers contain good ideas with which we can experiment
in our bid to reform the society. These articles have suggested ways
and means by which we can combat tribalism, fraud, serious crimes,
avarice, greed, and extravagance, which are disintegrating forces in
By impacting meaningfully through the involvement of Nigeria
press vis-à-vis as a social system in society positioning, it is her
duty, responsibility and obligation to enhance the survival of the
vital ingredient of society demand. Which are unity; structure;
inter-dependence; compliance, commitment and conformity; and
transmission of social norms, culture and value. The media is by this
gear towards enhancing the continuity and survival of the total social
The print media, particularly the medium of newspaper has become
the major source of information dissemination over the years, and also
the major means of political mobilization in Nigeria. Newspaper has the
ability to inform, educate, entertain, enlighten and mobilize the
public. That is why the government and other private bodies give much
attention to it. The ability of newspaper to also mobilize the people
and make them behave in a given manner and to perform certain actions
has made it a tool in the hands of the government. The medium serves as
an intermediary between the government and the people, because it
assists the government in getting it plans and policies across to the
people, and the people in return gets their response, feeling and
plight back to the government.
Footnoting this trend on the national scale, the challenges that
confront us as young democracy nation in a country of diverse ethnic
divide, is to establish an ideological and structural homogeneity with a
common political destiny and purpose among our diverse ethnic groups,
forthwith, the media being an institution of the larger society is
virtually needed to shoulder this course.
After many years of military rule in Nigeria, democracy became a
much needed endeavour and newspaper serves as a major tool through
which the people were fully informed, educated, enlightened and
mobilized to actively participate in the decision making in the country
during transition period.
Newspaper to a large extent helped in making the people of
Nigeria to get all the political awareness, and it mobilized the people
to both contest election and be voted for, or to vote for a candidate
of their choice as an electorate. The importance of newspaper in
ensuring a successful transition in Nigeria cannot be underestimated.
Pinpointing the decisive measure the Nigeria press has attained,
it is for her to maintain her effort to accumulate and accommodate the
structural pattern of the social unit into the mainstream of our
society entity, hence creating a platform for an all rounds stability
of societal struggle. During this attempt by the press in this
fortified struggle; and her nature of place in societal positioning it
came to interest that, politic or the political sphere falls as one of
the social system. The society today which is acknowledge as a
contingent of each social sphere/system(s), need the collaboration and
support of each system in order to get herself “alive”.
In our modern society, the remarkable role of newspapers in
political affairs of a free and democratic society or nation is that
they educate and influence public opinion relative to political issues.
They carry manifestos of political parties before the elections,
publish what certain political leaders think of other parties and give
adequate publicity to political activities.
The value of newspapers in a political society cannot be over emphasized. John Bittner (1980) wrote,
“On whether there should be a society without a newspapers or a
newspapers without a society I will chose the later because its
newspapers that made the society”.
Bittner simply mean that newspapers play the remarkable role of
making or marring a society. This supposition Jeremy Turnstel agreed
with when he wrote the books titled.
“The media is America” and a decade later he wrote another book “The media is still America”
Politically, it is the above supposition that prompted the study
of this work into analyzing, using audience research, to determine the
impact of the Nigeria press, in this case the newspaper, on the choice
of political candidate. This is because, among other things discussed
earlier the newspaper influences its readers by shaping their thinking
towards believing what ordinary they wouldn’t have believe. Onagoruwa
(1973) most have seen through this, agree with the supposition when he
wrote that: “The power of the press is the power of the written word –
its first quality is performance”. Unlike the spear arrow or the fired
bullet a written word can be in ages.
In other word, newspaper readership has a lasting memory of
whatever interesting that appears on pages of newspaper. And it is for
this reason that some politicians and political elections candidates
have device means of manipulating the mind of their supporters and
non-supporters alike into believing their ability to performed better
when elected into any political office position. The means they use
through the newspaper includes, writing of article directly or, using
other latent to write a favourable article that will increase their
personality and credibility; they also write opinion and advertisement
using their picture; some even newspaper. Columnists who exploit these
advantages promote themselves in the name of gaining cheap popularity
before the masses that are able to vote. No wonder Mark Levin (2000)
“Just as the Government becomes necessary to society for even
development, the press becomes inevitable to the political development
of that society”.
By this foremost discussion, I will through this piece of study
bring the relevance needs and impact the Nigeria press (print
restrictive) plays on politics. Citing the players of this system (i.e.
politic, as political candidate) I will do well, centered the work on
how widely the media promulgate the interest/yearning and goals of
these candidate and how on a better ground have the Nigeria press being
able to influence and implant a sustainable touch on the political
system, through her “conscientizing” of the political public on choosing
a political candidate as their choice.
It is in light of the above that this project research work
intends to study the impact of the Nigeria press on the choice of
political candidates using as case study residence of Kaduna
PURPOSE OF THE STUDY
As pose by contemporary scholars of the Instinctive Stimulus (S.I)
theory and those of the Agenda Setting theory on the powerful
influence of the media as a mind-controlling agent, it is on account of
their posits the research will drive home a point.
Citing possible ways the media could play or improve in her
“bi–literal” relationship with the political system, the researcher
will as a matter of fact, present the media on a cross-road to verify
(as being claimed by the “magic-bullet” theorist}, if at all, the media
have gain such a great influence in the affairs of the political
The main objective of the study is to stress the roles of
newspaper (a branch of the Nigeria press) as a tool for political
sensitization and mobilization in Nigeria. With this, it is among the
aims of this study to find out the effects of Newspaper report on
political affairs in Nigeria.
Furthermore, the study will be carried out to know the effect of
newspaper content on its reader in relation to other medium of Mass
Communication. Our study of the Nigeria press effect on choice of
political candidate will be lowered to cover only the print discourse,
in that it exist as the encompassing knowledge of what we appreciation
Through this study, a design will be made to make various
politicians contesting for electoral position as well as the electorate
to see the importance of newspaper in political mobilization,
information, awareness, enlightenment and education. With a provision
of two-edge paramedic against arguments to ascertain which from which
better spread the goodwill of politicians to the public – be it the
party, which the candidate belong or the print medium.
In the mean time, the objective will enable us see the relative
importance of newspaper to the society and why the government rely more
on newspaper content to mobilize Nigerians to fully participate in the
general elections in Nigeria which will be pattern to reflect how the
choice made by residence of Kaduna state metropolis is influenced by
the newspaper coverage.