NUJ president pledges to boost newsmen's welfare

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Malam Mohammed Garba, the newly re-elected President of the NUJ, said that the new executive committee of the union will focus on the improvement of the members’ welfare and professionalism.

Garba said this in Abuja on Saturday in his address after the inauguration of the union’s new executive committee.He said that the issue of training would be given priority by the new administration so as to enable journalists to improve on the quality of their reportage.

He said that the union would ensure that the members demonstrated the highest level of professionalism in their day-to-day journalism practice.Besides, Garba said that the union would conclude negotiations with media proprietors on the initiation of insurance policies for journalists working in their establishments.

He said that the union would also pursue the implementation of good welfare packages for journalists across the country.“I want to assure all journalists in the country that this executive council will take the issue of welfare seriously.“We will particularly pursue the issue of insurance cover for journalists.“I want to assure our colleagues in the private media that they will be carried along by their respective proprietors,” he said.

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Garba pledged that he would complete the new permanent secretariat for the union and the International Institute of Journalism (IIJ) before the end of his tenure.He said that his team would also push for an amendment of the union’s constitution to incorporate past NUJ leaders in the running of the union’s affairs.He said that the former leaders would become trustees of the union via the proposed amendment.

Garba, however, called on candidates who lost in the NUJ elections to join his team in efforts to take the union to greater heights.

Garba got 670 votes to defeat his closest rival, Mrs Olufunke Fadugba, who secured 150 votes at the polls.Mr Rotimi Obamuwagun scored 508 votes to emerge as the Deputy National President; Mr Adolphus Okonkwo garnered 193 votes to emerge as Financial Secretary, while Hajiya Fatima Abdulkareem polled 409 votes to win the post of National Treasurer.Besides, Mr Haidara Suleiman became the Vice-President (Zone A) with 92 votes; Mr Atunbi Oyelakin emerged as the Vice-President (Zone B) with 85 votes; while Mr Isinguzoro Ikechukwu became the Vice-President (Zone C) with 42 votes.Mr Omale Mathias emerged as the Vice-President (Zone D) with 112 votes; Hajia Aisha Baba became the Vice-President (Zone E) with 54 votes and Mr Uzaka Ukiye became the Vice-President (Zone F) with 69 votes.Alhaji Mustapha Lamidi was returned unopposed as the National Internal Auditor, while Lawan Gbenga, Bako Wilson and Ahmed Suleiman were similarly returned as Zonal Secretaries of Zones B, D and E respectively.The inauguration ceremony was witnessed by some past NUJ leaders, as well as representatives of Kano, Kogi, Borno and Ondo states, among others.