BY: VITALIS UGOH, Calabar
The Cross River State council of Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), has berated the former Minister of Aviation, Chief Femi Fani-Kayode for publicly insulting the state correspondent of Daily Trust newspaper during a press conference
It would be recalled that Mr. Eyo was among journalists invited by the former ministers aide for a press conference where he attempted to ask a question, when he boosted into insults on the journalist.
As a result of several outburst by the Nigerian press and members of the public, the state council in an emergency congress issued a communique condemning his action.
It stated “arising from the recent outburst from the former Minister of Aviation, Chief Femi Fani-Kayode with the Cross River State Correspondent of Daily Trust Newspaper, Mr. Eyo Charles during an illegal press conference organized by the Cross River State Government, on Thursday, August 20, 2020 and subsequent reaction from different segments of the society, the Cross River State Council of NUJ held an emergency congress to appraised the various issues that emerged from that event.
Accordingly, it said “after exhaustive deliberations and contributions from members the Congress condemns the verbal insult and abuse from FFK and noted that such words could only come out of the lips of a frustrated, immature, bankrupt, irresponsible and unsteady mind:.
It therefore directed for the blacklising of the former Minister of Aviation from all media activities in the state.
Also, Congress further blacklists the government of Cross River State from any media coverage by all members of Nigeria Union of Journalists in the state for organizing an illegal press conference thereby creating a platform for FFK to abuse and insult a journalist.
It mandated the state Council to immediately communicate in writing to all media organisations to withdraw their correspondents from Government House and stop them from covering or reporting any activity of the State Government until the issue is resolved.
Congress restates its total support for and stand with the Daily Trust Correspondent, Eyo Charles on the question that resulted to the unprovoked outburst.
It also directed the State Council to issue warning letters to members who attended the press conference and did not do anything to protect their colleague after which each of them is to individually write an apology letter through the State Council to the National Leadership of the Union with a firm promise never to violet the rules and regulations guiding the Journalism practice.
Congress further resolved that henceforth all press briefings by any individual(s), public or private organizations must be held at the NUJ Press Centre, unless as maybe directed by the State Council.
It warned that any journalist that organizes or attends any press briefing not approved by the State Council shall be sanctioned in line with NEC resolution on the proscription of beats, Congress forced the immediate proscription of the illegally operated Cross River State Government House Press Corps.
Congress thanked the National Leadership of the Nigeria Union of Journalist, Management of Daily Trust Newspaper, Civil Societies, Community Based and Faith-based Organisations, religious leaders, members of local and international organisations, groups and individuals for defending the truth.