Ondo: Akinterinwa, HOS, AAUA VC Honored At 2023 NUJ Press Week

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The Ondo State Commissioner for Finance, Mr Wale Akinterinwa has been honoured by the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) with Award of Excellence as the State Commissioner of the Year 2023.

Similarly, the Ondo State Head of Service, Pastor Kayode Ogundele won the Award of Excellence as Distinguished Public Administrator of the Year 2023.

Also honoured by the Ondo NUJ award was the Vice Chancellor, Adekunle Ajasin University, Akungba Akoko, Professor Olugbenga Ige; the Proprietress, Mummy’s Place Schools, Dr Mrs Elizabeth Oshin; the CEO of Ever Shine Travels, Prince Samuel Ijiti and Member of the House of Representatives, representing Ile Oluji/ OkeIgbo/Odigbo federal constituency, Mr Festus Adefiranye.

They were decorated at the NUJ 2023 Press Week Dinner & Award Nite held at the Press Centre, Akure on Friday, December 1, 2023.

Speaking on behalf of the award recipients, Mr Wale Akinterinwa while appreciating NUJ in the state for the honour, dedicated the awards to the Ondo State Governor, Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, SAN who according to him gave them the power to fly and operate for a better state.

He said the award would spur him and others to deliver more services for the humanity and Ondo State.

Akinterinwa said, “It is humbling to find myself and I believe other awardees as well being honoured by such reputable group of people as the Nigeria Union of Journalists.

“At the same time, I want to believe that this is one honour that we will not forget in a hurry because we all know what the NUJ represents and for them to have found us worthy of this honour in our different fields of endeavour, it is a big surprise.

“I for one, didn’t know that they were observing what I was doing. In fact, the truth, and they can testify to it that I shy away from the media. I try to avoid talking to them, because, like a friend of mine always say, that the media can make or mar you.

“I am very careful, not out of fear but out of being misquoted. So, I try to shy away but I genuinely try to let my work speak for me, without necessarily doing it in order to attract any favour or attention.

“So, I want to thank everyone of you, the members and then executive members of NUJ, who have found us worthy of this honour.

“And I personally want to dedicate this award to no other person, than the Governor of Ondo State, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Odunayo Akeredolu, SAN, CON, who I believe, gave me along with other members of his cabinet, the platform to display our talents under his leadership.

“He’s a leader that I know that always listen to what you have to say. He’s not a man who forces his own view on you and I say it with all confidence and sincerity that when you offer an idea that he thinks after thinking through, that is superior, he will gladly align with you.

“I think, it’s because of this that when you hear that our commissioners are best in this country, it is because we were given a platform to showcase ourselves.

“So, I thank NUJ very much for this opportunity and on behalf of other awardees, I want to say great thank you to NUJ, right from the National President, to the Ondo State Council Chairman and my brother, Leke Adegbite and to all the NUJ members,” Akinterinwa said.

Speaking at the occasion, Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu charged Journalists in the state to continue to compliment  efforts of the government in improving living condition of the citizens.

Governor Akeredolu who was represented by the State Commissioner for Information and Orientation, Mrs Bamidele Ademola-Olateju, lauded Journalists in the state for doing their job in line with the ethics of the profession.

Akeredolu who congratulated Mr Akinterinwa, Pastor Ogundele, Prof Ige and other awardees, described them as worthy ambassadors of his administration, advising them not to relent in their services to humanity and the state.

In his address, the NUJ President, Chief (Dr) Chris Isiguzo represented by the B-Zone Vice President of NUJ, Comrade Ronke Samo, described Journalists as the bedrock of any community said ways an manner journalist are treated are not encouraging.

Isiguzo congratulated Ondo NUJ members for another colourful press week celebrations.

In his address at the occasion, Chairman of Ondo State Council of Nigeria Union of Journalists, Prince Leke Adegbite said awarded people were selected on merit and enjoined them not disappoint but to do more for the society.

Adegbite used the opportunity of the event to appeal to all political class to put the interest of Ondo State first in all their dealings especially as “we prepare for the 2024 governorship election, while intervention by Elders and rule of law should be followed in resolving the current political logjam in the state.”

He appreciated members of the union for their selflessness toward making the union proud.

Some Journalists in the state were celebrated for their professional outputs during the dinner, as they went home with professional award, such as Radio Nigeria staff reporter, Olufisoye Adenitan who won Akogun Adetunji Adeleye Crime reporter of the year (broadcast category) as Tosin Ajuwon of Daily Trust won the print category.

Saheed Ibrahim also stood out with two award as the winners of Amb Dayo Adeoye Education Reporter (print) and Dr Biyi Adegoroye Investigative reporter of the year (print); Eniola Olurankinse won  Education reporter of the year for the broadcast category.

Others are: Sunmola Olowookere of The Hope claimed Dele Atunbi Judicial reporter (Print); Dr Dayo Duyile Political Reporter of the year was won by Adewale Momoh of The Guardian and Precious Oluwole of Federated Chapel, while Femi Atolagbe of The Hope won Ayo Ogedengbe Sports Sports of the year (print) and Gbenga Oluwajana of OSRC/Orange FM won Broadcast Sports Reporter category.

Dr Felix Ale Broadcast Journalist of the year was won by Zaheed Aribisala of OSRC; Alhaji Abass Akinwande Producer of the year, won by Kemi Ademola of NTA; Ayo Durodola On-air personality of the year award goes to Damilola Taiwo of Crest FM; Mr Sunday Ajongbolo won Dr Felix Ale Most Committed Veteran Journalist of the year while the NUJ  Chairman’s Best Member of the year goes to Mrs Odunayo Ajo-Sawyer of OSRC Chapel and Omosileola Adesoye-Ajayi emerged Ayo Omotosho Best Newscaster Award winner.

Other winners of professional Award included; Bolu-Olu Esho won Dr Felix Ale Journalist of the Year (Print); Babatope Okeowo and Adeboye Ado emerged the winners of Oba Obamuwagun Grassroots Reporter of the year; Banjo Egunjobi won Williams Olufunmi Information officer of the year; Stephen of The Hope won photojournalist Award; Olumide Idowu of OSRC picked the Bayo Olanusi Cameraman of the Year.

Consequently, the following categories were sponsored by Ayo Durodola, namely: Dr Dayo Duyile Political Reporter of the Year (Print/Broadcast), Ayo Ogedengbe Sports Reporter of the Year (Print/Broadcast), Bayo Olanusi Cameraman of the year, Ayo Omotoso Best Newscaster of the Year, Ayo Durodola On-Air Personality of the Year and Alhaji Abass Akinwande Best Producer of the Year.

Among those in attendance at the event are; Chairmen and secretaries of NUJ, Board of trustees of NUJ, permanent secretaries among others.

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