Mr Ambrose Somide, the Managing Director, Radio Services, Daar Communications Plc, says the Lagos Council of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) is in dire need of experienced journalists to lead the union.
Somide made the remark when the campaign team of Mr Adeleye Ajayi, a chairmanship candidate for the Sept. 30 NUJ election, visited the organisation.
According to him, experienced hands are needed in the running of the Lagos NUJ in order to move the profession forward.
“Your experience will come to play here as a thorough bred journalist. Experience matters when running for positions like this.
“I want to believe that making use of that experience, the Lagos council will have a lot to gain,” he said.
Somide noted Ajayi’s experience both in electronic and print media as well as his foreign training would be an advantage for him if he emerged as chairman.
He, however, noted that his organisation was also sponsoring one of its best hands, Mrs Abiola Beckley, for the position of Vice-Chairman in the election.
The managing director recalled that Daar Communications had played crucial roles in Lagos NUJ as an organisation that “celebrates experience, dexterity and hard work.”
Somide, who scored high Ajayi’s manifesto especially on capacity building and welfare, said journalists deserved better wages and remuneration.
Also speaking, Mrs Abiola Aberuagba, the Head of News and Current Affairs, Ray Power FM, described Ajayi as a vibrant journalist.
“Election is not a do-or-die affair,” she said and called for support for Beckley.
Reeling out his manifesto tagged: “Era of Collective Responsibility”, Ajayi said all members would have a sense of belonging if elected just as he promised improved welfare package for members.
According to him, priority will be given to accountability, capacity-building and rebranding of the union’s monthly congress as part of efforts to make it educative.
“Our administration will adopt a participatory approach of committee system in running the union such as Committees on Finance, Capacity-Building, Welfare etc. for equal representation by all segments and stakeholders.
“Local and foreign training and retraining for media professionals including photo-journalists will be the high-point of the administration.
“Already, an exchange programme is being worked out with some international media organisations and institutions to make journalists more competitive and creative.
“The union under my leadership will as a matter of policy draw up a programme for our colleagues who either lost their jobs or are in distress. Our administration will step up efforts toward the approval of the Media Salary Structure,” he said.
Ajayi said elders of the union would be re-integrated into the system with a view to tapping from their wealth of experience to move the union forward.
On the lingering NUJ Mowe land matter, Ajayi said his administration would leave no stone unturned to resolve the problems associated with the project.