By Emmanuel Elebeke
ABUJA—The President of the Nigerian Union of Journalists, Chris Isiguzo, has said that the union is proposing a journalists’ salary enhancement bill to be sent to the 9th Assembly after inauguration in June.
Isiguzo dropped the hint at a briefing to announce the NUJ Press Freedom Awards 2018 held at the union’s secretariat in Abuja.
He said the bill when passed into law is expected to address the lingering demand by media practitioners for better welfare package.
The NUJ President also informed that President Muhammadu Buhari has assured the Nigerian media practitioners that the harassment and intimidation of journalists experienced during his first term will not be repeated in his second term.
He said the union during a meeting with the President recently told him in clear terms that journalism should no longer be seen as a crime in Nigeria and that if Nigeria is in democracy and if indeed the country is going to stand shoulder to shoulder with other nations that are also enjoying democratic rules, that the issue of press freedom, the rights to freedom of expression should not be toiled with.
‘‘Clearly, journalism should not be a crime. This is an opportunity to stress that. Last week I was with the President and some other members of the CWC NEC of the NUJ and of the issues that we were able to bring to the front burner was the fact that journalism should not be seen as a crime and we are not comfortable with the situation where there is obvious clamp down on journalist. The level of intimidation and harassment clearly has been on the increase,” he said.