By Ndahi Marama
MAIDUGURI—President of Nigeria Union of Journalists, NUJ, Mr. Waheed Odusile, has called on other newspapers to emulate Vanguard in coverage of the war against Boko Haram, government and security agencies, especially the resettlement of millions of internally-displaced persons, IDPs, back to their communities in the North-East.
Odusile spoke on the occasion of Borno NUJ 2014-2017 Combined Press Week with the theme The Role of the Media in Post-Conflict Rebuilding in North-East, Nigeria, during which Merit Award was given to Vanguard Media Limited.
He said with the elusive peace gradually returning to the state and the North-East, there was need for the media and other humanitarian actors to support government’s reconstruction and resettlement process.
In his address, Borno NUJ Chairman, Alhaji Baba Haruna, said: “The Council, an umbrella body of over 200 journalists working in the state, had observed with keen interest the efficient role being played by Vanguard, which led to the recognition, appreciation and presentation of the merit award.”
For the people’s welfare—Vanguard
Receiving the Award on behalf of Vanguard Media Limited, the publishers of Vanguard Newspapers, Regional Editor, Northern Operations in Abuja, Mr. Soni Daniel, said: “Vanguard, since its first edition hit the news stand on June 3, 1984, has continued to supply current, balanced and factual news to readers at home and abroad daily, using a combination of its printed editions and online versions.
“Among other things, Vanguard aims to serve the people through unflinching commitment to free enterprise, the Rule of Law and good governance. Its core values have largely driven our commitment to the people of Borno State and the North-East since the ongoing conflict erupted.
“We share the concerns of the displaced people and will continue to give a voice to their groaning until they are fully rehabilitated, reintegrated and given a new lease of life.
“We thank our Borno Correspondent, Mr. Ndahi Marama, for his courage and resolve to stay throughout the period of the insurgency, furnishing us with happenings and activities of insurgents and how government is sustaining efforts in restoring peace being enjoyed in the state.
“We also thank the Borno State Government, led by indefatigable Governor Kashim Shettima, Chairman Northern Governors Forum, for his resilience, steadfastness and focus in fighting for his people despite the challenges plaguing his state.”
Also, the Chief Executive of Dangote Foundation, Mrs. Zouera Youssoufou, promised that the Foundation will continue to support Borno State as part of its corporate social responsibility.
In his address, Governor Shettima congratulated the winners, noting that despite the security challenges, the government, through the Ministry of Reconstruction, Rehabilitation and Resettlement under the Commissioner, Professor Babagana Zulu, embarked on reconstruction of destro-yed public and private infrastructure in 15 council areas of Bama— Chibok, Gwoza, Dikwa, Ngala, Mobbar, Kaga, Damboa, Monguno among others.