The Ondo State Government, has revealed that the present administration of Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu is committed to addressing various challenges facing members of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), in the state as raised by the new leadership of the Union.
This is just as the Union expressed deep appreciation to Governor Akeredolu for approving the recruitment of widows of two late journalists, Olubunmi Afuye and Stephen Sotanwa (Sweet Steve), who died in an armed robbery attack at Ilara Mokin and road accident on Akure-Ondo road respectively.
Both deceased formerly worked with OSRC/Orange FM media group.
These were the highpoints of discussions when Pastor Niran Adeyemo, the Ondo State Head of Service, received in his office in Akure on Tuesday the new State NUJ Executives led by the Chairman, Comrade Leke Adegbite who paid him familiarisation visit.
Adegbite had earlier demanded the appointment of qualified senior members of the Union as Permanent Secretaries; Creation of Local Government Information Department; Promotion of qualified Staff of the state Ministry of Information; Payment of gratuities owing Retired Staff of Owena Press (The Hope newspaper) and incorporation of the newspaper into the State Civil Service.
The NUJ Chairman explained that the media and information sector remains a pivotal to the achievement and success of various laudable projects of the state government, hence the need for the present administration to sustain its support to the media industry.
Adegbite also applauded Governor Akeredolu for acting promptly on a letter of the Union sometimes last year on the need to employ the two widows of the late media professionals to enable them cater for children of the deceased.
He said, “On behalf of our Great union, I want to sincerely express our appreciation to Mr Governor for graciously ordering immediate recruitment of wives of our two late members following a letter I wrote on behalf of our Union when I was the General Secretary.
“We also want thank you Sir as the HoS and the SA to the Governor on Union matters and Special Duties, Mr Dare Aragbaiye, for your efforts in making this a reality. We thank God that the two of them had since assumed duties as civil servants since January this. We will remain grateful to Mr Governor for this compassionate gesture,” Adegbite said.
Responding, the State Head of Service, Pastor Adeyemo said the state government was working hard to reposition the civil service, saying promotion into Directorate cadre would henceforth be subjected to availability of vacancies.
On various issues raised by the NUJ, Adeyemo said the state government would look into them and take appropriate actions that would be in the best interest of both sides.
The HoS encouraged NUJ to ensure its members subscribe to the state Contributory Pension Scheme and the Health Insurance Scheme in order to further reduce various challenges facing workforce.
Adeyemo who officially congratulated the new NUJ Executives, enjoined media professionals in the state to continue to support and promote numerous giant strides of the Akeredolu’s administration.