Edo NUJ grazing field [COMMENT][Internet broadband]Part 1

Edo NUJ grazing field [COMMENT][Internet broadband]Part 1


By Reporter with Conscience

For years now, members of the Nigeria Union of Journalists, Edo State Council and Stakeholders appear to be losing their nerve and puzzled about the airy promises over the sudden turn of events about self-acclaimed elected leaders of the union who traded with the goodwill of the people and covertly enriched themselves during their tenure in office.

Somewhat fresh, aspirants have presented compelling arguments on how to end the era of holocaust in the union by individuals who wielded short which has power reached a tipping point.

Barely three years after the mantle of leadership was passed to one of the accidental leaders who ate the ‘seed yam’ that was meant for the next planting season in NUJ, thereby making the Union feeble and ineffective incubators of learning with less emphasis on the challenges confronting its members.

As defined by truth-seeking realist, Frantz Fanon, “Every generation must, out of relative obscurity, discover its mission, fulfills it, or betrays it. The forthcoming poll to elect new members into the State Executive Council of NUJ, affords journalists to either make a choice between social inequality or reclaim lost opportunity to set the union on the path of progress.

People have rights to complaints and demand for change of leadership without a vision or plan
especially when their hopes and expectations have been dashed and lessons learnt. Several others, informally expressed regret why they took up journalism as their occupation.

For delegates to the December 2021 election into the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Edo State, the moment affords them the opportunity to either undertake a reality check on the various contestants and appraise either the performance of those seeking second term in office or do a postmortem on incorruptible and accountable leaders into positions of authority.

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But how well has the union achieved these set goals or add value to its members in line with set of rules in terms of who gets what and how?

Way back in 2012, Hon. Razaq Bello-Osagie, former member of House of Representatives in Edo State representing Oredo Federal Constituency, donated internet Broadband to the Nigeria Union of Journalists, Edo State Council, drew media attention.

The intention of the donor was to integrate technology, open up news-gathering techniques for journalists and researchers and secure a seamless digital access operation and transform the entire landscape of journalism.

Journalists and election observers across Nigeria and beyond who were deployed to monitor the 2012 governorship election in Edo State enjoyed the uninterrupted internet facility free-of-charge at the NUJ Press Centre in Benin City and saved a substantial budget for data out of which they also powered their smartphones.

*Things fall apart*

Most of the legacies that were bequeathed by past administrations to Edo NUJ have grounded due to lack of sustainable policy framework after an initial back-and-forth excuses when the leadership ran into a diversion lane and began to grope in the dark of affliction, without questioning deviation from the practice of democracy. Nobody is under any illusion.

Again, the devices had packed-up. That information that is grounded in science, truth, and analysis rooted in authority and conscience.

Similarly, another 100 meters internet LAN service that was donated to the current union leadership by a popular social media influencer based in the State has also become a stillbirth between opposing lines of incompetence and mediocrity.

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Almost a decade after these legacies were frittered away, one of the officials of Edo NUJ who was part of that infamous leadership, is aiming to return and preside over ‘the grazing field for the third time’ despite being assailed by a coughing fit, yet resist a change.

Recall that in the face of a fierce-troubled anxiety that unintentionally vindicated his old view about ICT and its importance, this unnamed individual to sell his mini laptop being part of the work tools a former Governor of the State used to empower a set of journalists in the State.

Fellow compatriots, the choice of those to elect to lead and direct the affairs of the NUJ must be those who have a track record of performance and purposeful leadership.


Leadership positions in NUJ are not for poor students of mentorship due to greed and avarice. Also, Candidates without any agenda and work plan on how to achieve them, should not be trusted with leadership because progress and meaningful development do not travel on a straight line.

Nine years later, Comrade Festus Alenkhe, has decided to connect with history, realising that ‘Unexamined Life is not worth Living,’ according to Socrates in the Oracle of Delphic. Accordingly, leadership should not be used for self- aggrandizement instead of reflecting on the values and defining the vision of her founding fathers for the welfare of its members.

Determined to fill the gaps between knowledge and practice, Alenkhe, a Chairmanship aspirant in the forthcoming elections into the State Working Committee of the Nigeria Union of Journalists, Edo State Council, has offered himself for service and build the broken walls of the pen profession like the Biblical Nehemiah who reconstructed the broken walls of Jerusalem where the former performed his pilgrimage a few years ago.

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As a man who does not have the magic wand to all problems, Alenkhe understands that leadership entails the ability to influence and guide other followers in an organization.

Accordingly, the actions of a leadership are necessity to inspire progress and development in society that allow people to exercise their potential.

The Broadcast journalist seeks to leverage on partnership with telecommunication service providers to drive a reliable and sustainable internet service providers that will not drain the resources of users (Journalists) and avoid cut that could arise from non-payment the bills if given the mandate to lead Edo NUJ and pollinate the leadership qualities.

Based on the commitment from Alenkhe, there is no doubt that he will deliver on his campaign promises and strive to restore the dignity of the noble profession.

According to him, “If I win as Chairman of Edo NUJ, I will restore a free internet connectivity in the Union within 72 hours after my swearing-in.”

A snapshot at his antecedent, there is no doubt that if given the mandate, Alenkhe put resources together to reposition the media ecosystem and leverage on his humanitarian experience in Red Cross and many other assignments that had been entrusted on his care, is not a dry punctuation or a mere conjecture.

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