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Nigeria going through difficult political season, actors on rampage for trust of electorate – NUJ President, Isiguzor

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Chief Chris Isiguzor, National President of NUJ

By Akanji Alowolodu, Bauchi

The National President of Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Chris Isiguzor has said that the country is going through a political season, where so many political actors are now on rampage to gain the trust of the electorates.

According to him, “It now behoves on the media to raise to the occasion and critically examine the policy documents of persons aspiring for political offices.Journalists must set the agenda in this regard where they are clearly defined as agenda setters” .

He added that, “This is the time for us to assume fully that role and begin to discharge same, so that we are not easily carried away by selfish interests.We must rise to the occasion and not remain as lap dogs, we must be the watch dogs as we have been clearly define to be”

The NUJ President further said that the problem of fake news is seriously casting aspersions on the journalism profession in the country, calling on leadership of the union at all levels to ensure that it fished out quacks from the profession 
The NUJ National President was speaking on Monday at the official launch and book presentation written by retired National Secretary of the NUJ, Chief Shuaibu Usman Leman held at the Hazibal Suites Annex Hall in Bauchi.
He emphasized that the media is the oxygen of a working democracy, to the extent that if the media is not working, the systems of the country cannot work perfectly and effectively particularly in a democracy.

The National President of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), also stressed that without a responsive working media industry that flourish , the unity of Nigeria will be threatened and face difficulties.
Speaking earlier, the former NUJ National Secretary, Shuaibu Usman Leman called on governments at all levels to make protection of lives and property of journalists a priority, adding that the gesture would be regarded as a special consideration for journalism which is pivotal to the development of democracy in the country.

Shuaibu Leman, urged the NUJ leadership at all levels to continue to struggle for better salary structure for journalists in the country, stressing that when Journalists are properly paid, they will perform optimally and both journalism and democracy will truly benefit from this.
According to him, “If you look at it, Journalists are one of the set of professionals that are least paid in this country.We have tried our best to ensure that salaries and emoluments are improved upon, the conditions and welfare of journalists are properly taken care of”
“However, we have not succeeded as expected and this is one of my greatest regrets and I hope that those who come after us will continue with the struggle so that in no distant future, we will succeed in this regard.My belief is that when journalists are properly paid, they will perform optimally and both journalism and democracy will truly benefit from this,” he said.
The former NUJ National Secretary assured that he will remain committed to the tenets of journalism in order to have a better profession particularly in this democratic dispensation. 

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