By Abdulwahab Abdulah
lagos—It was a day of honour for 10 journalists occupying political offices as well as those who have excelled in the journalism profession as they were honoured by the Lagos State council of the Nigeria Union of Journalists, NUJ. Those recognised at the weekend by the NUJ, according to the chairman of the council, Mr Deji Elumoye were the ones who have excelled on the job and in their character.
They include the special adviser on media to President Muhammadu Buhari, Femi Adesina, Secretary to Lagos State government, Tunji Bello, National President, NUJ, Waheed Odusile, Chief Press Secretary to the Lagos State governor, Habib Haruna.
Others are the managing director, Sun Newspapers, Eric Osagie; MD, New Telegraph, Funke Egbemode; Permanent Secretary, Lagos State Ministry of Information and Strategy, Fola Adeyemi, GM, Radio Lagos/Eko FM, Funke Moore, GM, Lagos Television, Deji Balogun, and GM Lagos Traffic Radio, Yinka Adagun.
The NUJ chairman, Elumoye, stated: “The distinguished journalists have not been found wanting either on the job or in their character and have made the council to be proud of them. “We deem it fit to honour these 10 senior journalists because they have been worthy ambassadors of our profession and have brought glory to journalism, and that is why their recent elevation did not come to us as a surprise.
“Some of them have even gone beyond the newsroom to serve in government and they returned unblemished. “For instance, Funke Egbemode was the spokesperson for former House of Representatives’ Speaker, Patriciah Etteh and Eric Osagie was Special Adviser to Governor Adams Oshiomole of Edo State. Both of them are back to the very top echelon of the newsroom”, Elumoye said.
Odusile, who responded on behalf of the honorees thanked the NUJ state council for recognising their worth, while promising that they will not in any way let the NUJ and members down in their responsibilities. Earlier, the former Editor in Chief of the defunct Newswatch magazine, Ray Ekpu, who chaired the occasion urged the journalists, especially those serving under this civilian administration, to handle the job with caution and protect the trust of the journalism profession.
He noted that public offices like the one they are occupying is transient and require lots of magnanimity. Ekpu, the Chief Executive Officer of MayFive, said the honorees should be guided by Rumsfeld’s memo on Rules, which predicted that nobody “is indispensable or infallible.”