The leadership of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) Zone F has expressed condemnation of the ‘mindless negligence’ and the unfinished construction of major roads in multiple regions of the country, specifically the South-South States and the East West roads. This information is reflected in a communique released at the Zone F meeting that took place this past weekend in Uyo, Akwa-Ibom State, and was signed by the chairman of the communique drafting committee, Comrade Dominic Akpan, as well as the secretary and a member of the communique drafting committee, Comrade Andy Egbon.
Comrade Angese John, the zonal Secretary, and comrade Opaka Dokubo, the NUJ zone F Vice President, also supported the Communique made available to newsmen in recent times. As contained partly in the Communique: “The meeting, which had 14 leaders of the union in attendance including the National President, Chief Chris Isiguzo MFR, spoke comprehensively on the issue of Grand Patron and was determined to follow up on the candidates nominated to play that role in the Zone.
South-South Zone’s governors urged to cooperate with incoming gov’t.
Leaders at the meeting expressed concern over the Federal Government’s ‘mindless negligence to prioritize the construction of major roads in the South-South States, including the East-West Highway, the Calabar-Itu Highway, the Benin-Sapele Road, and the Benin-Lokoja Road. The South-South Zone’s governors were also urged to cooperate closely with the incoming Federal Government in order to complete the roads because “the goose that lays the golden egg should have a nice place to lay its eggs”.
According to the Union’s 8-point Communique, the interventionist agency’s mandate could be cut short due to a shameless power struggle within the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) Board. Therefore, the meeting urged the Board members to put aside their differences and carry out the Commission’s mandate for the sake of the zone’s residents. The meeting’s attendees agreed that the Rivers State government’s destruction of property belonging to the Bayelsa State government in Port-Harcourt had a negative impact on the relationship between the people of the two states.
Six governors in the Zone tasked with plans to revive BRACED Commission.
Furthermore, they asked the incoming Rivers State administration to exhibit accountable leadership by resolving the matter in the context of brotherhood, good conscience, unity, and peace. Peer review and development cooperation in the Zone were also discussed during the meeting, and the six Governors in the Zone were tasked with coming up with plans to revive the BRACED Commission. The meeting took note of the rise in kidnappings and other criminal acts in various areas of Rivers State following the 2023 general elections, which has resulted in a destruction of life and property.
As a result, it urged the government and security forces of Rivers State to increase surveillance and patrols across the state. The meeting took note with satisfaction of the backing the Union had received from the Southern Governors. Governor Udom Emmanuel was applauded for his role as a dependable supporter of the Akwa-Ibom State Council, while Governor Tonye Cole of Bayelsa State was also praised for elevating journalists to positions of authority and providing cutting-edge technology at the Ernest Ikoli Media Complex.
Members were called on to maintain high journalistic standards.
A member of the Delta State Council was commended for being considered by Delta State Governor Ifeanyi Okowa for the position of Permanent Secretary. Likewise, Governor Godwin Obaseki of Edo State was praised for his progressive decision to raise the minimum salary for state employees to N40,000, and the summit urged the governments of the other states in the Zone to follow his lead. Members of the meeting were called on to maintain high journalistic standards at all times, especially in light of the rise of alternative news media and false information.