For several months running, the Rivers State Council of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) has been in the news largely on account of its inability to conduct a simple election.

The election was supposed to hold late last year precisely on August 12, 2021 after the immediate past administration had served out its tenure.

As usual, all the processes of conducting a new election including the constitution of a credentials committee were put in place.

No sooner had the former Exco been officially dissolved and fresh elections about to start than a group who appears to be above the law disrupted the process and the elections could not hold.

In the face of all of these, we (RIVPA MEMBERS) kept quiet as responsible citizens and members of the respected Pen Fraternity and moreso, as elders of the union in the state.

When eventually a consensus was reached that the 2018 membership lists of all the chapels be used as the working document to douse the fears of all the contesting parties, aimed at disenfranchising most of our members, we also obliged to give peace a chance.

Consequently, the election date was shifted from December 17, 2021 to January 13, 2022.

It was therefore surprising, that the same group also went ahead to tamper with all the lists of the private media in the state in pursuit of their earlier wish and plot to scheme us out of the elections.

To us, this was one action too many.

Perhaps, they need to be reminded that it’s the private media that sustain majority of them, (civil servants), as journalists.

We make bold to say that without the private media there is no journalism let alone NUJ.

Antagonizing the private media therefore to us, amounts to ingratitude and biting the finger that feeds most of them.

They should be sensitive to the warning of our forebears that, “The liberty of the press is a blessing when we are inclined to write against others, and a calamity when we find ourselves overborne by the multitude of our assailants”.

We regret all this unnecessary bickering, senseless politicking and penchant for causing crisis in our otherwise peaceful council known for integrity and high regard for ethical standards.

However, we wish to sound this as a note of warning that no one should take us for granted.

The NUJ Rivers State Council is for all us in the State and no one can wish the other away.

On this note therefore, RIVPA hereby accepts the outcome of the peace meeting initiated by the Honourable Commissioner for Information and Communications, Pastor Paulinus Nsirim and pledges to support anything that would bring permanent peace in the Union, and reunite all the contending parties together.

Lastly, I sincerely commend the Honourable Commissioner for Information and Communications, Pastor Paulinus Nsirim, our friend and Leader, Rt. Hon. Ogbonna Nwuke, Elder Ignitius Chukwu and the Vice President Zone F, my very good friend, Opaka Dokubo for ensuring that peace returns to the Union.

I am also very grateful to the National President of our dear Union, NUJ, for supporting and ensuring that peace returns to Rivers State Council of the NUJ.

Thank you very much Sir.

To all the contending camps, (CONSOLIDATION LEADERS AND MEMBERS AND LIBERATION LEADERS AND MEMBERS) thanks a million for embracing peace and accepting to move into the election as one indivisible family.

To all RIVPA MEMBERS, thank you for your maturity, understanding, support, encouragement and prayers.




Pst. Jerry Needam, JP



By Okoye Chidiebele

Am Flamboyant. Oku!

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