The Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) has called on the Federal Government to support its on-going drive for a Media Stabilisation Fund, to assist ailing media organisations in the country.
The President of NUJ, Chief Chris Isiguzo, made the appeal at the opening of the 7th Triennial Delegates Conference of the union, on Thursday, in Umuahia, Abia.
Having identified the nation’s media was in crisis, Isiguzo said the union had initiated moves, with the support of other key stakeholders, to address the challenge.
Isiguzo demanded the immediate stoppage of the collection of Digital Access Fee, saying that it was complicated, while asking that the amount so far collected be accounted for.
The president berated the country’s effort at ensuring international best practices in the broadcast industry, regretting that in spite of the efforts, it had continued to lag behind.
On insecurity, Isiguzo commended the renewed determination by the Federal Government to put an end to the protracted insecurity challenges ravaging some parts of the country.
He equally commended the courage and professionalism of the Armed Forces and appealed to Nigerians to unite against terrorism and other acts of insecurity.
Isiguzo, who is re-contesting his position, frowned at the various comments of some highly placed government officials accusing the media of over-blowing challenges in the country before the international community.
In his presentation, the Guest Speaker, Mr Emma Agu, urged the media to keep pushing for national unity, instead of helping to destroy it.
Agu, who spoke on theme: “The media in times of national renewal,” said that the media should at all times, be accountable to the people, as well as engage the stakeholders constructively.
Our correspondent reports that many dignitaries, in their goodwill messages, urged journalists to uphold the unity of the nation through their reporting.
While declaring the conference open, Gov. Okezie Ikpeazu of Abia commended journalists for their efforts in ensuring peace and stability of the nation.
Represented by his Commissioner for Works, Dr Bob Ogu, the governor assured the delegates and other guests of their safety while in the state.