Saturday 27 March 2021

NUJ South-West Chairmen Shun Aregbesola's Investiture as the Grand Patron


Influential members of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) in the South-West boycotted the investiture of the Minister of Interior, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, as the Grand Patron of NUJ in the zone.

South-West chairmen of the Nigeria Union of Journalists on Friday shunned the investiture of the Minister of Interior and former Governor of Osun State, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, as the Grand Patron of NUJ in the zone.

Kakakioodua Online News has earlier reported that six state council chairmen of the NUJ disagree about the justification for the award.

It was learnt that the event, which was scheduled to hold at the NUJ Press Centre, Iyaganku, Ibadan, Oyo State capital later held at Premier Hotel.

However, the South-West Zonal Vice President of NUJ, Cosmas Oni, and Secretary, Bamigbola Gbolagunte, graced the event boycotted by chairmen of NUJ in the South-West zone.

Many political associates of the interior minister including the Oranmiyan flag bearers attended the event.

While justifying why Aregbesola deserved the award, Gbolagunte said, “The criteria used in choosing Aregbesola was his performance in office and secondly, he owns three media organisations.

“When he was the governor in Osun, Aregbesola set up the Bureau of Communication and Strategy where he also employed journalists to work there. He also gave one bus to the Osun State Council of NUJ and another bus to the NUJ Correspondent Chapel.

“In addition to that, he was accessible to journalists; he held an interactive programme where journalists and other members of the public asked questions uncensored regularly. Even right now as the minister, he is accessible to journalists.”

However, a group, Advocacy for Media Rights described the investiture as a perceptional error on the part of the union, insisting that the personality of Aregbesola in the public gauge deserves nothing of such recognition.

The group, in a statement signed by the National Coordinator of the organisation, Tolu Fatukasi, argued that “Aregbesola lacks established media friendliness and consistent solidarity to the union”, adding that “the former Osun Governor was the first governor in Nigeria’s fourth republic to have publicly declared journalists as personal non grata and enemies of the state”.

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