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BY: Ademola Orunbon

  First and Foremost, let me congratulate the winners of elections at their various positions in persons of Comrade Soji Amosu of News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), as the new Chairman of the State Council, Comrade Kunle Olayeni of New Telegraph (Correspondent), as Vice Chairman, Comrade Ayokunle Ewuoso of (Information), Secretary of the council, Comrade Abiodun Taiwo of Daily Times (Correspondent), as Assistant Secretary and the rest other of the Executives Council of the state NUJ, who took the mantle of leadership unopposed. Though, not that you were the best candidates to be emerged but the people voted you in to entrust their affairs of the council on you and to test your ability, capability, forthrightness and prudence in handling the positions of authority, rather not to be seeing yourselves as the best among the contenders. And you should not see those who lost out in the elections as failure but among them are even better in educational background, intelligence quotient (IQ) and even what it takes to steer the boat of the NUJ Ogun State council.

And let me sermon those who lost in the race, that winners  do not quit and quitter do not win, they are kindhearted fellow members of the council as they did their best to win the race and assume the leadership of the council. Notwithstanding, when two are fighting for a position or the others, it is one person will eventually emerge as the favourite candidate, indeed, I really salute your courages, compassionates, steadfastness and comradeship in accepting defeat at the elections and congratulated the winners, in persons of Comrade Oluremi Olugbenro, Comrade Abiodun Ogundipe, Comrade Daud Olatunde, Comrade Goke Oyebade, Comrade Bisi Alarape and the rest of all, as you accept defeat and stretch the hands of comradeship to the winners too. I really doff my hat and congratulations to you all too!

By and large, the election is over, and while the winners and wailers were basking in euphoria and celebrating of their winnings, they should not also remember those who lost in the elections that they might not be happy as the winners were rejoicing, not because they incur any debit to run the race but the chances to offer his/her best to the council was dashed by losing in the elections. That’s more reasons why those being elected need to work assiduously and also work in glove with those who lost out, so as to bring sanity and the lost glory of the council back. In fact, they really need to co-opt those who lost to them, on the activities of the council, not to see themselves as a semi god but just ordinary members of the state council. It was just the will of God that let them emerged victoriously, not by their qualifications, outstanding, egoism or tbeir meritorious work.

Now, the hurdle ahead of the new Executive Council Members (exco) of the council, if you look vividly at the council, you will realize that they have deviate from the original missions, visions and objectives of establishing the council which was named as “Iwe Irohin,” it happened to be a place of meeting point for reputable Journalists and well known people in the society but now it has became of a point of convergence for prostitutes and drunkards, due to non-challant attitude, recklessness and love for money of our larders that direct the affairs of the council. The council now become a dominance of illiterates, prostitutes, drunkards and the rest of all. The core Journalists threatened to abandon their council for aliens all because of illegality been perpetrated on daily basis at the secretariat. The NUJ members were not given their due respect from those nonentity that occupied the place.

This make me recalled while “Iwe Irohin” was established in 1840s by the missionaries of the Presbyterian Church when they arrived Nigeria. They settled down in an area known as English Town in Calabar. Among these missionaries was Rev. Henry Townsend who later moved to Abeokuta in the 1850s. In Abeokuta, he established a printing press in 1854 which he used, five years later, to publish the first newspaper in Nigeria called “Iwe Irohin Fun Awon Ara Egba Ati Yoruba.”

The first edition of the newspaper came out on November 23, 1859. Later on, the newspaper was published fortnightly (every 15 days) and sold for 120 cowries (Ogofa Owo Eyo, equivalent to a penny). James Ede, who was trained by Henry Townsend, served as the Chief Printer of the newspaper. Iwe Irohin was highly patronized by the few literates of that time living in Egba and the entire Yoruba land. The circulation of the paper was around 3,000 as at that time. Rev. Henry Townsend’s main purpose of setting up the newspaper then was to make the new converts read and write. He himself said: “my objective is to get the people to read and to beget the habit of seeking information by reading.”

If you look at the motive behind the establishment of Iwe Irohin then, you will observe that our generation has trespassed from this objectives by turning the secretariat into a prostitution and drunkard’s den, all because of their greed and avarice. Iwe Irohin further published news of church activities, arrival and departure of religious dignitaries, ordinations and so on. It was later broadened its contents by adding stories about Abeokuta, cotton and coca statistics, and starting from 1960, the newspaper carried advertisement from local firms and government agencies. The newspaper was cautioned by the C.M.S authorities in 1863 for some of its contents that antagonized the colonial government, but this didn’t stop Townsend from running his newspaper.

Now, the core value of establishment of  Iwe Irohin has already faded in the hands of selfish leaders and it is not over until it is all over. Moreover, the essence of journalism is just as simple as A, B, and C, if we can take the bull by the horn, thus is to provide citizens with the information they need to make the best possible decisions about their lives, their communities, their societies and their governments. Yes. if we can admit that and act upon that, it will better for you and I. Likewise too, news is a major aspect of our job too, that is; communication that keeps us informed of the changing events, issues and character in the world outside. Once this was all our jobs entails, why not changing ourselves, our secretariat and many others for better. Though, it may be interesting or even entertaining, but foremost value of news (which is our job), is as utility to empower the informed. Now, these questions are demanding for quick response from my colleagues. What are we informing? Who are we informing? When, Where Why are we informing and How are we informing? As the adage says: Charity begins at home! Do we comport ourselves as well? Do we informed well as an informer, as a journalist? With this, let us come together as one entity to move the council forward, it is our collective responsibility to move the council to the greater height.

Now to the NUJ state council of elders in Ogun state which comprises of our former NUJ chairmen, directors, deputy directors in the Ministries of information both at the Federal and state level and other former members of the executive council were too gentle to my taste. What are they doing to let the council backwardness among the comity of council of the federation? You people were the ones we are usually counted on, you have let the council shattered beyond a reasonable and repairable stage. Sirs/Mas, you have a lot to do in redeeming the image of the council; before the national level. Now that another sets of executive members have resumed office in to ran the helm of the affairs of the council, it is better for you Sirs/Mas to reunite everybody in a fold by summon all and sundry, ask them of their grievances and let them register it and for once settle it amicably and lets forge ahead for better future of the council. It is better to do it now or never.

Long Live NUJ Ogun state Council

Long Live Ogun state government

Long Live Federal Republic of Nigeria

Orunbon, a journalist and public affairs analyst, wrote in from Abeokuta, Ogun state.

Can be reached or 08034493944, 08029301122

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Breaking: Again, CCT Judgment On Walter Onnog‎hen Shifted



The judgment of the Code of Conduct Tribunal on Justice Walter Onnoghen, who is being prosecuted on charges of assets declaration breaches, has been shifted from 9am, the original scheduled time, till noon on Thursday.

Onnoghen had arrived the premises of the tribunal at about 8.40am ahead of the judgment.

Only two of his lawyers and a handful of his aides were seated in the courtroom when a court official announced the postponement at about 9am.

No member of the prosecution team was in court when the postponement was announced

None of them arrived as of the time of filing this report at about 9.11am.

Onnoghen had yet to step out ‎of his vehicle as of the time the postponement was announced.

His convoy left the premises as soon as the information about the new development reached him.

The Chairman of the CCT, Danladi Umar, after the prosecution and the defence made closing arguments on Monday, specifically fixed judgment for 9am on Thursday‎, a departure from the usual 10am sitting time of the tribunal.

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Lagos State Governor, Mr Akinwunmi Ambode on Wednesday received the UEFA Champions League Trophy alongside its Ambassador and former captain of Barcelona FC of Spain, Carles Puyol in Lagos House, Alausa, Ikeja.

Puyol, a three-time Champions League winner is in Nigeria on a three-day visit to lead the UEFA Champions League Tour connecting with consumers and football lovers.

Governor Ambode, who was represented by the Chairman of Lagos State Sports Commission, Dr Kweku Tandoh, also received Nigerian football legend, Austin JayJay Okocha, who was part of the delegation.

Speaking while receiving the trophy, Governor Ambode expressed excitement with the fact that the organisers of the tour considered Lagos as one of the states to visit, adding that the development was particularly gratifying more so that the synergy between sports and entertainment as well as tourism had been massively played up in the last four years.      

The Governor also lauded the contribution of Puyol and Okocha to the development of the round leather game in Nigeria and worldwide, saying they deserved to be appreciated and celebrated.

“I must say I am very pleased with the organisers of this Trophy Tour for deeming it fit to take the UEFA Champions League Cup to Lagos. We are particularly excited because our administration has focused on the synergy between sports, tourism, entertainment and the arts, among others and the people can see the positive effects of our efforts in that regard.

“We are pleased to also welcome Barcelona FC and Champions League legend, Carles Puyol to Lagos, as well as our legend, JayJay Okocha to Lagos House. Many of us underrate this legend that we have and just yesterday, I understand Puyol had a very difficult time on the field of play in Uyo when JayJay had to give him a few tricks.

“Unfortunately, JayJay did not get to play for Barcelona; he would have lifted the Champions League but I must say we appreciate what Okocha has done for Nigerian football. If you have a player that is sometimes compared to Messi, Maradona and spoken about in the same breath, then we know we have a star in our midst and so I like to thank JayJay for his contribution to football,” Governor Ambode said.  

He said in order to ensure a successful Trophy Tour, the relevant security and government agencies have been contacted, assuring that all the activities lined-up as part of the tour would be hugely successful.

While wishing the team a successful tour in Nigeria, Governor Ambode said the State Government would be glad to receive the trophy back in the State in the nearest future, just as he assured that the government remained committed to make Lagos the sports hub not just in Africa but the entire world.

Speaking earlier, Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Nigerian Breweries Plc, organisers of the Trophy Tour, Mr Jordi Borrut Bel thanked Governor Ambode for warmly receiving the team, saying the Trophy Tour was specifically organised to bring the tournament closer to fans.

He said as part of the tour, there would be a road show from Maryland Bus Stop to Ikeja City Mall, among other activities.   

Besides, he commended Governor Ambode for his well-though out policies and projects in all sectors and sections of the State, saying the Governor deserved to be appreciated for also creating enabling environment for businesses to thrive in the State.

“I will like to say that this visit is a great opportunity for the management team of Nigerian Breweries to appreciate Governor Ambode on the success that he has recorded in the last four years of administering the State which is a testament to the fact that well-thought policies have been implemented as has been witnessed in security, in transportation, in health, in welfare sectors in the State, and particularly in the continuous construction of impactful infrastructure as well as the Governor’s focused and dynamic leadership in the State.

“We also want to thank the Governor for sustaining a supportive business environment in the State,” he said.

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Awolowo Commends Ooni For Positively Showcasing Nigeria To The World



The Director General of the Nigeria Export Promotion Council(NEPC), Mr Segun Awolowo has desribed the Ooni of Ife, Ooni Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi, Ojaja II as a unique African traditional ruler with giant srides, commending him for positively shocasing Nigeria and Africa to the world.

The NEPC boss made this assertion in his Abuja office recently while playing host to a delegation from Ooni Ogunwus which was led by the Asoya of Ile Isoya in Osun state, Oba Muraina Adedini in respect of the maidden edition of TellAfrica International Arts & Craft Festival(TIAF) slated for June this year in Baltimore MD, USA and Dublin in Republic of Ireland.

“Kabiyesi Ooni, being a foremost African monarch has undoubtedly lived above expectations going by his giant strides especially in Agriculture, youth empowerment and cultural tourism. He is indeed a great ambassador of our culture who has been positively showcasing Nigeria and Africa to the global community.” Awolowo said

While pointing out the benefits in agriculture, Mr Awolowo urged relevant stakeholders to uphold it and make it the mainstay of the economy. He also mentioned processing of agricultural produce like cashew and cocoa among others, which he said would be better than sending raw goods abroad.

On tourism, Awolowo revealed plans to link TellAfrica up with National Council of Art & Culture(NCAC) for possible collaboration as part of measures to ensure a successful TIAF events as scheduled.

Leader of the Ooni’s team, Oba Muraina Adedini thanked Mr Segun Awolowo and his NEPC team for the honour and respect with which the Oonis delegation was warmly recieved. He said the contributions of the Ooni Ogunwusi towards the development of agriculture and tourism are unprecedented which have always been supported by the Federal Government.

While seeking unflinching support of the NEPC on the forthcoming Art & Craft festival and other international programmes of Ooni Ogunwusi, he stated that the collaboration Between the House of Oduduwa/TellAfrica and NEPC will make huge impact on the Nigerian Art and cultural tourism sector.

Ooni’s director of media and public affairs, Comrade Moses Olafare had earlier while introducing the Ooni’s team told the NEPC that Ooni Ogunwusi has adopted Agriculture and tourism as greatest potentials for developing the Nigerian youths, adding that productively utilizing the both sectors will immensely lead to an immeasurable economic properity.

Olafare enumerated how NEPC and the House of Oduduwa are in tandem, particularly through the exportation of non oil products and promotion of tourism in the country through cultural festivals like TIAF.

The maidden edition of the Ooni’s TellAfrica International Art and Craft Festival(TIAF 2019) is billed to hold in Baltimore USA from 13th to 16th and in Dublin, Ireland from 24th to 30th, June 2019.

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