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Published On: Thu, Mar 20th, 2014

Uduaghan’s “Packages” Tear Delta State Journalists Apart

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By Fejiro Oliver
The much expected splitting of the Delta State Nigerian Union Of Journalists (NUJ) finally happened on Tuesday, 2014, as a splinter group conducted elections and sworn themselves in as the authentic union in the State. This preceded the State Council election which held on Wednesday at the Labor House, Asaba which was not keenly contested, as the incumbent State
Chairman, Comrade Norbert Chiazor came back unopposed, while the Vice Chairman, Felix Igbekoyi of the Daily Independent Newspaper, retained his post after beating Dunni of Leadership Newspaper.
According to our source, the splinter group were dissatisfied with the leadership of Norbert whom they accused of supporting charlatans and mediocre as Chapel Chairmen and Secretary. They cited a situation where the Sapele Chapel is governed by an alleged illiterate who has no University degree, but reported to have forged certificates, as well as the Secretary who is a known illiterate and posses no degree of any sort, even in Urhobo language to enable him be a Journalist.
Our reporter gathered that the factional leadership is led by the Chairman of the Correspondent Chapel, whose name we are yet to get at press time. A prominent member among the Norbert Executive revealed to us that they are happy with the development, as it showed how unhappy the members have been. One of those in the splinter group said unless the Sapele leadership, notably the Chairman and Secretary is removed with immediate effect, they would secretly support the splinter group, as well as commence the writing of petition to the National body of NUJ as well as the Security operatives to pick the duo and question them for parading themselves as Journalists and duping unsuspecting victims.
We authoritatively gathered that the main reason for the union tearing apart was due to the London training which the State Governor approved for the members last year to Reuters in London, which were attended by only loyalists to the State Chairman. Even the second batch was not spread round, as same people also attended. They also noted that money (brown envelop) given by the governor and commissioners during press briefing was not properly shared, but hijacked by few member of the State Executives.
An unconfirmed report revealed that the Governor had given the union N20 million but the State executive declared only a little amount, which infuriated them. A reliable source told us that a powerful force within the state government has given the splinter group his backing.

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