… Decries ‘skyrocketing price of cooking gas, Food Stuff, ‘artificial fuel scarcity’ Others
By Ralph Madugu
Media professionals in Plateau State, under the banner of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), have observed with dismay the current leadership tussle in the Plateau State House of Assembly.
Rising from a congress of the State Council on Wednesday in Jos, the NUJ members expressed dismay over the lingering leadership crisis in the State House of Assembly stating that it had “painted the state in bad light.”
In a 7-point communique, the members of the pen profession and watch dogs of the society called on the lawmakers to “put aside their personal interest and address the issues in line with the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and in the interest of the State.”
Worried by the adamant nature of some tricycle riders, also known as Keke NAPEP, who defy the 6pm curfew imposed by the Plateau State Government thereby constituting traffic nuisance and security risk at night, the Council called on the law enforcement agencies to beam their searchlight on them with a view to bringing them to book.
On the indiscriminate use of the NUJ/Press stickers by commercial drivers and other members of the public who are not journalists, the council appealed to the Federal Road Safety (FRSC), the Police and other law enforcement agencies to ensure that anybody who carries such sticker should provide a valid NUJ identity card and that of his or her office as a means of identification, stating that any individual that fails to do so should be apprehended and charged for impersonation and penalized according to the law.
Council also expressed displeasure with the attitude of “some overzealous security personnel” who exhibit contempt towards journalists in the discharge of their professional duties and advocated for synergy between journalists and security personnel in the interest and development of Plateau and Nigeria.
The journalists, however, commended security agencies for the relative peace the state has enjoyed in the last few weeks, urging that sustainable measures be put in place to consolidate on the fragile peace.
The NUJ members advised the Plateau State Government and reputable organizations in the state to take advantage of trained and professional journalists in publicizing their activities to avoid misrepresentation through patronizing untrained persons under the guise of bloggers who do not understand the rudiments of journalism practice and have no gatekeepers which are key in news reporting.
The Council expressed worry over what it termed “the looming food crisis in the country and the continued hike in prices of food stuff in the market thereby making life difficult and unbearable for citizens” and appealed to Government to put in place a price control mechanism to ensure the affordability and accessibility of food to the public.
It also decried the high cost of living in the country, the “skyrocketing price of cooking gas and the “artificial fuel scarcity” and called on government to take urgent steps to arrest the situation.