Jalingo—The Nigerian Union of Journalists, NUJ, has received about N50 million from pledges made to it during the 2011 fund-raising for the construction of its national secretariat.
NUJ President, Malam Mohammed Garba, told the News Agency of Nigeria, NAN, yesterday, in Jalingo, Taraba State, that part of the amount had been spent on architectural design and building plan of the secretariat.
He said construction of offices, sinking of boreholes at the site had reached about 60 per cent completion, and vowed that before his tenure ended, NUJ would stop paying rent.
Garba said: “The issue of paying of rent has remained our greatest challenge since 2005. In 2012, the rent stood at more than N14 million both for NUJ and the International Institute of Journalism (IIJ).
“We are working tirelessly to ensure that this structure is put in place. I want to assure you that before my tenure ends, we will stop paying rents,” he said.
He said that the union had earlier acquired a 5.04 hectares at Mabuchi in Abuja valued at N750 million, for the construction of the permanent secretariat.
The president, however, said that the union was still striving to pull more funds for financing the fencing of the NUJ land.
“Fencing of the land is very expensive.
The estimate we are given is about N30 million. So, we are working with the Federal Capital Territory, FCT, as well as friends of the NUJ to acquire more funds,” he said.