Government, Ors Should See Journalists as Partners in Progress, Not Enemies – A’Ibom New NUJ Boss
– poised to cramp down on quackery
– promises better deal
By Iniubongabasi Anako – Uyo,
As the new leadership of the Nigerian Union of Journalists, NUJ, Akwa Ibom State Council, hit the ground running, renewed advocacy has been made for government and private agencies to treat journalists as indispensable partners in progress but not as threats to their successes.
Comrade Amos Etuk, the newly sworn-in Chairman of the union, gave the advocacy, amongst other topical issues, last Sunday, in an interaction with Edna Edward, a hostess of Ndito Akwa Ibom Radio/Television Program put together by Akwa Ibom indigenes in London, United Kingdom (UK).
Comrade Amos who was a guest in the program used the medium to reel out some of the cardinal blueprints of his new-born administration, assuring that the union under his able watch was resolved to chat a new course which will engender professionalism, integrity and objectivity of the noble profession, charging accredited journalists in the state to carry out their professional practice in line with the extant ethics and laws guiding the profession so as to restore and project the dignity that bequeath the profession.
He said: “NUJ under my watch has a lot in its sleeves for her teeming members. We are gonna pursue our set goals with all amount of seriousness that it deserves. First, we are going to build on the template established so far by the immediate past administration of which I served as the Secretary. We will reposition the union with great focus on not only the physical structures of the union but the professional character of the practitioners in line with the ethical demands of the profession”.
He advised government, corporate agencies and individuals to consider the services of qualified journalists as Aides on Media, for effective reportage of their activities, corporate projection and favourable public relations, stressing that, such gesture would aid better relationship between the journalists and the corporate world.
On the relationship between the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) and the state ministry of information, Comrade Etuk stated that the both has a good working relationship. He said as the mother ministry, the NUJ has a cordial working relationship with the ministry of information for the better and greater Akwa Ibom.
Speaking on the issue of proliferation and quackery, the erudite NUJ boss, said the immediate past administration has made his job in that regards easy, having ensured that journalists were meticulously screened during its biometric capturing and accreditation prior to the elections. According to him, “as it stands now, the total number of qualified journalists is public knowledge; it’s about 495 as at last count and with this number, we’ll be able to rid out quackery.” He, however, advised those who tagged themselves ‘ writers out of passion or flair,’ to avail themselves of the opportunity to enroll in the ongoing Journalism Courses at the International Institute of Journalism, IIJ, Abuja, Uyo Study Centre at the NUJ Secretariat, in order to be counted as qualified journalists.
“Journalism is beyond carrying Android Handset to put up a news report on the social media platforms. Social media influencers and the likes should be encouraged to go through formal education process to be fully seen as journalists. The new NUJ IS POISED to cramp down on quackery as part of our resolve towards changing the narrative to a positive professional drive”, he added.
The NUJ Chairman while commending the efforts of some media platforms in the state for living up to expectation admitted that there are still grey areas which must be bettered to ensure objectivity and accuracy which is the focal code of journalism, the world over. He, however, promised to run an all-inclusive administration; open to partnership and input from within and without where necessary, urging the media community to remain supportive and hopeful of a better welfare from his administration.