By; PATRICK TITUS, Uyo
The Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Akwa Ibom State Council has inaugurated committees to mark Workers Day and World Press Freedom Day coming up respectively on 1st May 2017 and 3rd May 2017.
The 5-Man Committee which was inaugurated on Tuesday in the presence of the State Executive Council of the Union witnessed Comrade Kufre Okon appointed to serve as Chairman.
Other members of the Committee are Comrade Uko Sam- Secretary, Comrade Udeme Hosea, Comrade Edifon Abasiobot and Comrade Clement Barikui.
In his remarks, the Chairman of NUJ, Elder Patrick Albert stated that there was need for the Committee to be set so as to celebrate workers and reappraise the activities of journalists as it relates to their freedom to practice.
He said the Committee will ensure the Union participates richly on workers day celebration, and ensure the commemoration of World Press Freedom Day is worthwhile.
He added, “Journalist is a global citizen. His reasoning must work in line with worldwide expectations. And for them to express their views in line with these expectations, they must have enabling environment to operate.
“Of course Journalists must be free to be able to work in helping to sustain our democracy and make government accountable to the people. We have had cases of abuse and molestation; cases were journalists are kept in detention without trial.”
The NUJ State Chairman told the committee to attract knowledgeable personalities from the media, academia and economic world so as to help examine how the “Society’s Watchdogs” are fairing, and how the profession is moving in line with United Nations Standard.
He mentioned that the World Press Freedom day will give opportunity for Journalists to have in-house preview to see if gentlemen of the profession are practicing within the guidelines of the do (s) and don’t of the practice.
In his acceptance speech, the Chairman of the Committee, Comrade Kufre Okon
thanked the NUJ Chairman and the State Executive Council for the confidence reposed on him to chair the committee.
He said he was excited much as he felt challenged to ensure the events come out successful. He pointed out that with the quality of persons who make up the committee, coupled with the support he experts from the union, he was poised on giving the Union his best, thus help members benefit from the events.
Meanwhile, the 2017 World Press Freedom Day will have as its theme: Critical Minds for Critical Times: Media’s role in advancing peaceful, just and inclusive societies.