Beware of Dangers In Vote Trading- NUJ Zone F

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………Warns Politicians Not to Heat Up Polity In South South

Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) Zone F, has called on politicians in the South-South region of Nigeria not to heat up the polity as country draws closeer to campaigns ahead of the 2023 general elections, as it warned the electorates the danger inherent in vote buying and vote trading.

NUJ Zone F (South South), made the call in a communique issued at the end of its meeting held Thursday, Ist September, 2022, in the capital city of Port Harcourt, Rivers State, noting that the people are traumatised enough as a result of economic hardship and general insecurity bedeviling the country and may not be able to endure a political crisis.

Being the inaugural meeting of the Zone under the leadership of Comrade Opaka Dokubo, the Zone F leaders in attendance deliberated on a wide range of issues, especially on the need to sustain regular meetings and commended Zonal Executive for efforts made thus far to keep the Zone together in peace and harmony .

According to the communique, “The meeting ratified the plans by the Zonal leadership to hold a Zonal Media Summit, using it as a platform to initiate conversation with critical stakeholders and other credible voices towards a politically stable and economically developed region. As prelude to the Summit, the Zonal leaders agreed to open up engagements with critical stakeholders and partners on the need to build a formidable Zone devoid of self devaluation and internal crisis.”

“The Zone resolved to henceforth, hold the Niger Delta Ministry accountable through the monitoring, inspection and evaluation of various projects embarked upon by the Ministry. It also called on the Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC, to sit up to its lawful functions, and particularly, ensure that capacities of the Niger Delta people are enhanced for optimal development of the region. Furthermore, the meeting called on the Federal Government under President Muhammadu Buhari to immediately inaugurate a lawfully and duly constituted Board of the NDDC in order not to continue to undermine the Act creating the Commission.”

The meeting equally frowned at the continued delay by the Federal Government to finish the construction of the East-West Road and therefore, called on the Government to declare a state of emergency on the Road, particularly, the Eleme section, to ease the sufferings of the people using the road.

“The meeting recognised and commended the Governors in the South-South Geopolitical Zone that have continued to support the various State Councils of the NUJ to meet up with their statutory mandates. It singled out the Governors of Akwa-Ibom State, H.E. Udom Emmanuel , Bayelsa State, H.E. Douye Diri, Delta State, H.E. Ifeanyi Okowa and Edo State, H.E. Godwin Obaseki; while appealling to the Governors of Cross River State, H.E. Prof. Ben Ayade and Rivers State, H.E. Nyesom Ezenwo Wike to be more magnanimous, gracious and kindly disposed to issues affecting the NUJ in particular, and media practitioners at large, in their States.”

“On a special note, the Zonal Executive Council commended the Akwa-Ibom State Honourable Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Comrade (Barr.) Ini Emem Obong for supporting the Zone F towards the successful hosting of its meeting.”

“As a follow-up, it implored the electorates to avoid undermining the Electoral Laws and Guidelines through vote selling, warning them to be mindful of those who would come to manipulate them to buy their votes, and consequently, their welfare.”

“The meeting equally commended the Zonal leadership for the peaceful and successful conduct of elections in five State Councils within the Zone; while thanking the members, asked them to continue to support and advance the peace template of the leadership.”

Communique was signed by Comrade Amos Etuk – Chairman, Akwa-Ibom State Council,
Comrade Patrick Ochei – Secretary, Delta State Council, Comrade Opaka Dokubo – Vice President, Zone F and Comrade John Angese – Secretary, Zone F

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