Posted by Pamela Eboh, Awka | 13 May 2015 | 3,495 times
The presidential race of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) took off yesterday in Awka with presidential candidate, Prince Rotimi Obamuwagun, calling on the members of the union in Anambra State to vote him in for effective representation.
In a campaign call that lasted for close to three hours at the state headquarters of the NUJ, the aspirant, who is currently the National Vice President of the union, said that though his predecessor, who is serving out his second term in office, has done very well in the area of infrastructure, that he intended to thread on the heels of that success to do more.
Obamuwagun reeled out his mission to include the provision of quality leadership while carrying the state along and also boosting journalism by ensuring that the right people are in the field as journalists.
Unveiling his 16-point agenda, the aspirant said he would boost journalism in Nigeria and improve the welfare of the practitioners, fight the canker worm of irregular payment of salaries to journalists through negotiation and reaching out to owners of media houses.
Others are training and retraining programmes for journalists, sponsorship of welfare packages for widows of deceased journalists drawn from each of the six zones of NUJ.
He promised to sustain NUJ online publication and institute an NUJ excellence award to promote excellence and ethical standard among members of the union.
While explaining how he will fight for the welfare of journalists to ensure that their salaries are paid regularly, Obamuwagun said: “I promise to implement all of the 16-point agenda if I am elected by you next month to lead the union. Under my leadership, it is either you pay or go on voluntary liquidation. We will approach the stakeholders and plead with them to pay their workers.”
He also assured that he would re-enact and resuscitate the NUJ Compendium which was last done during the tenure of Senator Smart Adeyemi.
Obamuwagun further promised that the National Secretariat would assist the state councils in furnishing their council offices with computers and other work materials as a way of boosting journalism in Nigeria adding that it was the enviable style of Senator Smart Adeyemi during his days as the president of the union.
“As President of NUJ, we will restore the philosophy of assisting to equip the state councils with computers and other working materials. That was what Senator Smart Adeyemi used to do in his days as the union’s president. We will work hard on that to ensure that such things are distributed free of charge to the councils. Also the N2, 000 fee for the union’s national identity card will be scrapped once your check off are paid regularly, same applicable to the union’s insurance,” he said.
Obamuwagun however called on journalists to always dress well and coordinate themselves with utmost discipline, adding that the NUJ is a strong and highly respected union.
“The way you dress is the way you will be addressed,” he said.
He also commiserated with the union on the demise of the union’s state secretary, Miss Ifeoma Anumba, who passed on last week.
He eulogised the late Anumba as a dogged fighter who always fight for the interest of the union and prayed God to grant her soul eternal rest.
Responding on behalf of members of Anambra State Council of NUJ, Chairman of the State Council, Mr. Henry Nwasike, pledged the support of the entire council to Prince Obamuwagun who will be contesting the NUJ President next month with other contenders.
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