Welfare Of Journalists, Catalyst For Press Freedom, National Development – NUJ

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By; RAYMOND TEDUNJAYE, Lagos
The Lagos Council of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) has posited that the welfare of Journalists must be given adequate attention if the press is expected to be truly free and contribute its quota to national development.
According to the Council, the remunerations of Journalists must not only be adequate and commensurate to their roles, but must also be at par with top salary earners in the society.
This, it said will insulate them from the pervading corruption in the country.
In a statement to mark the 2018 World Press Freedom Day by Dr. Qasim Akinreti and Alfred Odifa, chairman and secretary respectively, the council therefore implored media owners to rise up to their responsibilities to their workers and pay salaries as at.when due.
The statement reads in part, “The Union also noted that for the press to be truly free and contributes its quota to National development, the welfare of Journalists must be properly taken care of.
Their remunerations must not only be adequate and commensurate to their roles, but must also be at par with the top salary earners in the society to insulate them from the pervading corruption in the land.
The Union therefore called on media owners to rise up to their responsibilities to their workers and pay salaries as at when due”.
Further, it highlighted the importance of the day as a celebration of fundamental principles of press freedom and defence of media independence.
The statement further appreciated the theme of 2018 edition which addresses the enabling legal environment for press freedom and give special attention to the role of an independent judiciary  in ensuring legal guarantees for press freedom and the prosecution of crimes against journalists.
According to the release, Lagos State Council join other media professionals across the world to mark 2018 World Press Freedom Day and pay tributes to Journalists who lost their lives in the line of duty.
The theme of the 2018 celebration is “keeping Power in Check: Media Justice and The Rule of Law”.
World Press Freedom Day was proclaimed by UN General Assembly in December, 1993 following the recommendation of UNESCO’s general conference on May 3, and since then, the anniversary of the declaration  is being celebrated worldwide.

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