The Nigerian Union of Journalists (NUJ) has begun efforts in the accreditation of the International Institute of Journalism courses to award Higher National Diploma certificates
The National President of the union, Comrade AbdulWaheed Odusile disclosed this at a Special Congress of the Kwara State Council of the Union, held at the NUJ Pen house, Ilorin.
Comrade Odusile stated that the Union is at the process of also securing the license to establish a television station, while the International Institute of Journalism, IIJ, would run as a mono-technic.
He said that the admission of the Institute would henceforth be done through the Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB).
He emphasised the preparedness of his administration to create a solid financial foundation for the union through property development to make the Union self-reliant.
The NUJ National President said, “We are vigorously pursuing the Television and International Institute of Journalism projects, we want to develop NUJ properties to make the union self-reliance. We are also going to lay a more solid financial ground for NUJ. The revenue base of the Union currently is shrinking; many councils and unions have not been remitting their check off dues. Only Federal ministry of Information, Federal Radio Corporation of Nigeria, Voice of Nigeria are paying their check off dues as at when due.”
“The National Secretariat is ranking about N750,000 annually through check off dues and our wage bill is around N1.5 million. We currently owe our Secretariat staff about two months’ salary,” he stated.
Comrade Odusile, who is also the President of the Federation of African Journalists (FAJ) lamented the financial challenges facing the Union.
He said that many Councils and Chapels have not been remitting their check off dues, thus having adverse effect on the running of the National Secretariat.
Also speaking, the Lagos State Chairman of the Union, Dr Quasim Akinreti called for respect of the elders and the leaders of the Union.
Dr Akinreti said that they have laboured towards upholding the dignity of the noble profession.
The Kwara State Chairman of the Union, Comrade Abiodun AbdulKareem had disclosed that the National President came to honour the invitation of the International Press Institute and decided to interact with journalists in the State.
Comrade AbdulKareem noted that the Council is proud of the achievements of the National Secretariat under the leadership of Comrade Odusile especially steps taken on the biometric data exercise, while the national Secretariat has been given a new look.
He also informed the National Secretariat on the achievements of his administration, especially Journalists estate project, the Pen School, Day Care project and provision of working tools for members.
In his contribution, a former Chairman of the Union in the State, Mohammed Tunde Akanbi said the Union has been enjoying relative peace since the assumption of office of Waheed Odusile’s administration and stressed the need to accord respect for the leaders of the Union as done in other professions.