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Bayelsa NUJ Congratulates Sylva On Nomination as Minister

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Honourable Henry Seriake Dickson
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The Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Bayelsa State Council, has congratulated the former Governor and leader of the All Progressives Congress in Bayelsa State, Chief Timipre Sylva on his recent nomination and screening by the National Assembly as minister of the Federal Republic.

A statement by the Council Chairman, Comrade Samuel Numonengi and Secretary, Comrade Ogio Ipigansi hailed President Buhari for nominating Sylva as a minister noting that the appointment was well deserved as Sylva had shown great commitment and support to the APC – led Federal government.

The statement also commended the state Governor, Hon. Henry Seriake Dickson for congratulating and supporting the nomination and confirmation of Sylva as a minister.

The statement described the gesture of the state Governor as a welcome development and a demonstration of his posture for putting the interest of the state above others.

It urged other politicians in the state to copy from the two leaders and ensure that the 2019 Governorship election in Bayelsa state was peaceful and advised Bayelsans to see themselves as brothers irrespective of party affiliations.

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Kogi NUJ Bids Farewell To Late Member,  Sam Egwu

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From Joseph Amedu, Lokoja

Members of the Nigeria Union of Journalists, NUJ, Kogi State Council, at the weekend, paid their last respect to one of their own , Mr. Sam Augustine Egwu, the State Correspondent of the Leadership newspaper,who died a week ago in Lokoja, aged 67.

While speaking at the  solemn occasion organised in honour of the deceased at the NUJ Press Centre, the Chairman of the Council, Alhaji Mimohjimoh Adeiza, described the death of Sam Egwu, popularly called elder among his colleagues, as a very painful development.

He said that though death is inevitable to every mortal, the council took solace in the fact that, the deceased lived a peaceful life with everybody and left peacefully, leaving a big hole very difficult to fill.

He said,”Sam Egwu the elder, as he was popularly called by his colleagues,was a peaceful and lovable personality.

We have never had any cause or time to settle quarrel between him and others. Anywhere he was there was no dull moment.

“He was so passionate about journalism as a job, because he would always say, ” I have no other job apart from Journalism” and he did it so well,we are going to miss him greatly.

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“We pray that God will give his family and Journalists in the state, the fortitude to bear this irreparable loss,” he said.

Our Correspondent reports that highlights at the 30 minutes occasion were the prayer for the reposed soul of the late Journalist offered by a member,Pst.Gowon Edibo while members filed pass his remains at the centre,led by the chairman.

After that, the remains of late Sam Augustine Egwu  was taking to Awo Akukunda his country home in Ankpa Local Governnent Area of kogi state,for church service and burial.

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Yuletide: Reps Press Corps Visits Abuja Children’s Home, Presents Items

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By Ubong Ukpong, Abuja

The House of Representatives Press Corps, at the Weekend, visited the Abuja Children’s Home located at Karu, in the Federal Capital Territory, (FCT), with various items showered on the children, in the spirit of the Yuletide.

The journalists who embarked on the humanitarian gestures, presented various items including bags of rice, cartons of noodles, pasta and clothing among other things.

The Corps also made a cash donation for the treatment of a numerological ailment of one of the children in the home.

Chairman of the Corps, Comrade Grace Ike, who led members to make the donation said the gesture was in the spirit of Christmas, which is to show love through sharing of gifts.

She said, “We are members of the House of Representatives Press Corps. You can call us parliamentary reporters and we feel it is the right thing to extend our hands of fellowship to people.

It is Christmas and we all know Christmas is the celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ.

“A lot of people would say journalists, what are we doing here? Our own is to inform, educate, enlighten and let the people know what is happening.

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“We are the conscience of the society and that is why we are here. So we have our token to present. Do not look at the quantity of what we are giving. Look at the intention behind what we are doing. Like I would always say, it is good to give and the greatest of it all is love and love simply means affection.

The Administrator of the Home, Musa Danjuma Yakubu, expressed gratitude for the gesture, just as he called on well-meaning individuals and organizations to emulate the gesture.

He highlighted the challenges of the Home including feeding, operational vehicles, dilapidated structures, and perimeter fencing, among others.

“We appreciate your coming and the most important thing is that it is not as little as you see. We appreciate the effort of your people. There is nothing that is too small for us. Every other thing, whether food, school fees and all those things we appreciate and it is people like you among other people who come to help with one thing other the other.

“For the school, we have students that are even in the university and one graduated and is already working. Another is on the four hundred level and one would be going to the university in Nasarawa State University by February next year if there is life. So we appreciate your coming.

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“As for feeding, well, what you have brought we would use judiciously but the challenges are surplus. Security wise just like somebody said he was here ten years ago, the perimeter fencing is breaking down. And we have a building that is almost sinking, the girls’ hostel. It was donated by one organization but I think there is a problem with the water system. I know water must find its level so it is sinking.

“We are also hoping that with time somebody would take up the responsibility of renovating them. And if you look a few metres away, it was recently commissioned on the 16th of December 2022, a skills acquisition centre donated by the NDIC (Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC). Part of it has been completed. We want to equip it.

“We have some tailors among our children. Some do shoemaking. The one I am wearing was done by one of our children in this home. He does it once in a while he is still in secondary school. We have a lady that just graduated from hairdressing.

“Other challenges are if you look at our vehicles they are almost obsolete. We do not even have utility vehicles. We have buses. One is grounded and another is working but just halfway it is down. So we need vehicles.

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“Also the hostel, well the hostels are in order. The female hostel is there. The male hostel is there and we have nannies that take care of them. They do shifts and once a week, they go. We have a dining hall where they gather to eat. Some of the children go to secondary school.

“We have a physically challenged that attends school in Kuje. So she goes there and we look for a nanny that would take care of her. And one goes to a secondary school nearby. But the primary school is just within the home.

“So these are basic things that we have. And we have a hall. Sometimes we rent it out for activities. The only thing is that we do not allow alcohol here so that it does not have a negative effect on our children.”

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FG Releases Twitter Negotiation Proof after Suspension

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By Loveth Eze, Abuja

The Federal Government has refuted the allegation by a former Twitter staff that the micro-blogging site did not negotiate with the Government in the wake of its suspension.

The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, yesterday in Abuja who discredited the claim also released to the media, the proof of the negotiations with the government.

It would be recalled that on June 4, 2021, Twitter operations were suspended in the country following the micro-blogging site’s alleged persistent use of activities that were capable of undermining Nigeria’s corporate existence.

Contrary to the claim by the former Twitter worker, the minister said there was a long-drawn negotiation between Nigeria and Twitter at the instance of the latter, following the suspension of the platform.

“Seven days after the suspension, precisely on June 11th, 2021, we received a letter, addressed to President Buhari, from Twitter’s Vice President in charge of Public Policy, Europe, Middle East, and Africa, Sinead McSweeney, seeking to meet with us on the Twitter suspension.

“That letter kick-started a number of activities that culminated in the extensive negotiation,” he said.

The minister said after receiving the letter, the federal government announced its team to discuss with Twitter.

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Mohammed said he chaired the team which comprised the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Ministers of Communications and Digital Economy and Foreign Affairs.

He said other members of the team were the Minister of Works and Housing, Minister of State for Labour and Employment and the Director-General, National Intelligence Agency.

Mohammed said following the composition of the team, they received another letter from a group, Albright Stonebridge Group, which was working at the behest of Twitter.

Other members of Twitter team, according to the minister included, Karen White, Senior Director, Public Policy, Europe and Sub-Saharan Africa; Ronan Costello, Senior Public Policy Manager, Africa, Europe, Middle East;

Also on the Twitter team were Emmanuel Lubanzadio, Head of Public Policy, Sub-Saharan Africa; Jim Baker, Deputy General Counsel, and Ambassador Johnnie Carson, Senior Adviser, Albright Stonebridge Group.

“The back-and-forth negotiations culminated in a series of agreements that paved the way for the lifting of the Twitter suspension in January this year.

“Gentlemen, with the facts that we have supplied, you can now see that the fellow who reportedly alleged that Twitter did not negotiate with Nigeria is either being economical with the truth or didn’t even understand the workings of the company where he worked,” he said.

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The minister said he released the proofs following requests from the media seeking a response to the allegation by the former Twitter worker and to set the records straight.

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