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NUJ honours Diri, Alaibe, others for contributions to journalism in Bayelsa



Yenagoa—The Bayelsa Chapter of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), has conferred an award of excellence to some political leaders in the state including Governor Douye Diri, his Deputy, Lawrence Ewhrudjakpo, and the former Managing Director of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), Ndutimi Alaibe.

According to the NUJ, the leaders were recognized for their various contributions to the practice and development of journalism in the state.

Also recognized were three members of the Federal House of Representatives from the State, Hon. Preye Oseke, Hon. Fred Agbedi and Hon. Isreal Sunny-Goli.

Diri who was recognized with the Media Icon of the Year award while speaking at the NUJ Press Week 2022 at the secretariat in Yenagoa with the theme “Investigative Journalism; Key for Peace and Development in Nigeria” tasked media practitioners to uphold the tenets of good journalism.

“The essence and the revered place of journalism as the fourth estate of the realm is being eroded by the unprofessional manner of social media influencers and bloggers practicing the trade,” he noted.

The governor who was represented by his Deputy, Lawrence Ewhrudjakpo expressed regret that most online reporters do no proper background work and checks before publication. As a result, he said they publish untrue stories.

He, however, called on the conventional media to rise to the challenge as their usefulness is greatly threatened by social media.

Also delivering his keynote address titled “Investigative Journalism: Key to Peace and Development in the Niger Delta”, former Managing Director, Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), Ndutimi Alaibe called on media practitioners to emulate the journalistic footprints of late Earnest Sisei Ikoli.

He said this will help journalists in the state to write against injustice and promote developmental journalism.

Alaibe, who was represented by a lecturer in the Department of Agriculture, Niger Delta University, Bayelsa State, Doctor Achimota Dickson, charged journalists to beam their searchlight on the reason why the Federal Government and administrators of the NDDC have failed to execute the Niger Delta development master plan.

Also speaking, the Chairman of the occasion, Chief Executive Officer, Ayalla Group of Companies, Chief Robert Enogha said investigative journalism should not always be about reporting negative and secretive occurrences, advising that, newsmen in Bayelsa State should tell the good story of the Ijaw man.

The Royal Father of the Day, Chairman, Bayelsa State Council of Traditional Rulers, the Ibenanaowei of Ekpetiama Kingdom, King Bubaraye Dakolo highlighted the significance of investigative journalism to societal development.

He further explained that it is only through such reportage that the alleged involvement of top government functionaries and security personnel in oil theft in the Niger Delta region could be brought to the fore.

In separate goodwill messages, Director New Media to Governor of Bayelsa State, Kola Oredipe, and Chairman, Sports Writers Association of Nigeria, Bayelsa State, Alambo Datonye advised journalists in the area to build their capacity by training and re-training to up their games.

Alaibe on the night was awarded the NUJ Man of the Year award while Deputy Governor Lawrence Ewhrudjakpo, and the duo of Hon. Oseke, Hon. Agbedi and Hon. Sunny-Goli was given an award of excellence.

Also, the management of the Nigerian Content, Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB) emerged as the Best Content Promoter of the Year.


If elected president, I will name, shame oil thieves—Atiku to business leaders




Lagos—The 2023 presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar has threatened to name and shame oil thieves in the country if elected Nigeria’s President in 2023.

Channels TV reports that Atiku made this known on Saturday when he interacted with the Business Dialogue Stakeholders Forum at Eko Hotel in Lagos.

Atiku also said he would confiscate all oil blocs allocated to some Nigerians who have failed to make them operational.

“If you are not going to develop oil blocs given to you, we will take it away and give it to those who will develop it.

“We will also assemble the names of those involved in oil theft, publish same and prosecute them,” Atiku told the stakeholders.

He reiterated his commitment to privatizing the refineries in Kaduna, Port Harcourt and Warri.

Atiku was at the event with his running mate and Delta State Governor, Ifeanyi Okowa.

Both Governors Udom Emmanuel and Aminu Waziri Tambuwal of Akwa Ibom and Sokoto states; who are the Chairman and Director General of the Atiku/Okowa presidential campaign team, urged the stakeholders to support Atiku for a better Nigeria.

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Only 250 psychiatrists left in Nigeria, says association




Enugu—Taiwo Obindo, president of the association of psychiatrists in Nigeria, says the current psychiatrist-to-patient ratio in Nigeria is one to one million.

According to TheCable, Obindo Spoke on Thursday on the sidelines of the ongoing 53rd annual general and scientific meeting of psychiatrists in Enugu.

He said two-thirds of certified personnel leave the country annually.

According to him, this has led to the poor ratio and has made accessibility and deliverability of psychiatric care relatively difficult in the country.

“The standard is that one psychiatric doctor should take care of 10,000 patients. But today, we have one psychiatric doctor to more than one million Nigerians,” NAN quoted him as saying.

“As we speak now, we have less than 250 certified psychiatric doctors throughout the country, and more are leaving by the day.”

Obindo called for the passage of the national mental health bill as amended to ensure proper administration of mental health treatment, adequate funding, and remuneration of professionals.

“Mental healthcare should be incorporated into the primary healthcare system to cater to primary and secondary institutions treating mental health disorders in localities,” he said.

“Presently, the little budget meant for mental health treatment goes to tertiary medical institutions only. Mental health should be fully taken care of at primary healthcare centres.

“Percolating mental healthcare to primary healthcare institutions will save Nigerians transportation, feeding and accommodation costs, and the stress of conveying mentally-ill persons to urban centres where psychiatric hospitals could be found.”

Speaking further, Obindo said Nigerians facing insecurity and forced displacements have continued to face psychological and psychiatric trauma and disorders.

He said the government should ensure that such people recover from the shock they have witnessed.

“It is important that governments and other support groups give them special attention to meet their current challenging emotional, psychological, and psychiatric needs so as not to fall into deeper depression or societal withdrawal,” he added.

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FG reintroduces history in basic education curriculum




Abuja—The Federal Government has announced the reintroduction of history as a stand-alone subject in the basic education curriculum 13 years after it was abolished, according to the Tribune.

The government noted that 3,700 History teachers have been shortlisted for the first round of training for enhanced teaching of the subject.

Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu while speaking at the flag-off ceremony of the reintroduction of the teaching of history and training of history teachers at basic education level on Thursday in Abuja, lamented that national cohesion was being threatened with the country retreating into primordial sentiments.

He said this is because of the lack of knowledge of the evolution of Nigeria following the removal of History from the basic education curriculum.

Adamu was represented by the Minister of State for Education, Goodluck Nanah Opiah at the event attended by Sultan of Sokoto, His Eminence, Muhammadu Sa’ad Abubakar and other key stakeholders in the education sector.

History was removed from primary and secondary education curriculums from the 2009/2010 academic session.

Adamu ordered the reintroduction of the subject in 2019 following widespread condemnation.

Adamu said: “History used to be one of the foundational subjects taught in our classroom but for some inexplicable reasons, the stream of teaching and learning was abolished.

“As a result, history was subsequently expunged from the list of subject combinations our students could offer in both external and internal examinations compared to the subjects that were made compulsory at basic and secondary levels in Nigeria.

“This single act no doubt relegated and eroded the knowledge and information that learners could otherwise have been exposed to. It was a monumental mistake and have already started seeing its negative consequences

“The loss created by the absence of this subject has led to a fall in moral values, erosion of civic values, and disconnect from the past.

“More worrisome was the neglect of the teaching of this subject at basic and post basic levels of education which invariably eroded the knowledge of the evolution of Nigeria as a country.

“The immediate implication of this was that we lost ideas even of our recent past, and we scarcely saw ourselves as one nation and gradually began retreating into our primordial sentiments.”

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