By Freedom Okpubeku, Ughelli

 

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Barely one week to the commencement of elections into the executive positions of the state council of the National Union of Journalists (NUJ) in Asaba, members of the two teams contesting in the election raced to Ughelli June 23 and 24, 2020 to battle for votes as they visited the Ughelli Correspondents Chapel of the NUJ in Ughelli, headquarters of Ughelli North Local Government Area of Delta State.

The two contesting teams from Asaba arrived in Ughelli where they met members of the Ughelli Correspondence Chapel with zest.

First to arrive on Tuesday, June 23 was the Redemption Team led by Comrade Mike Ikeogwu, the incumbent chairman who is seeking re-election into the office of the Chairman. Speaking, Comrade Mike Ikeogwu appreciated the support he had got from Ughelli so far. He solicited for more support and votes that would return him to power by July 2.

He listed some of his achievements to include renting of a Press Centre for the NUJ in Asaba, securing an out-of-court settlement of the NUJ land dispute, resuscitation of the stipends to journalists in the state as well as cleaning up the press centre and replacing the ramshackle roof with modern ones. While explaining that the team’s name “Redemption” is borne out of the need to transform the union to an enviable position, Ikeogwu promised to restore the union’s sport programme, among others things.

Said he: “You will agree with me that the NUJ in Delta State is not yet where it ought to be … That is the reason we are saying ‘Yes, all hands must be on deck this time around to salvage the situation.’”

Responding on behalf of the Ughelli Correspondents Chapel, Comrade Akwopha Ochuko of the Vanguard newspaper expressed confidence in the Redemption Team and promised that the chapel will vote for the team.

Comrades Kofa King of the Daily Independent newspaper and Polycarp Orosevwotu of the Nation newspaper also spoke in favour of the redemption group after their respective questions that bothered on the position of the Ughelli chapel and financial accruements from Asaba to it were answered by Comrade Mike Ikeogwu.

The ten members of the team present included Comrades Mike Ikeogwu, Felix Ekwu, Sunday Apah, Ogono, and Toju Oteri.

On their part, members of the Prize Team who took their turn on Wednesday June 24 also met with members of the Ughelli Correspondents Chapel in Ughelli to seek support during the election.

In his speech, leader of the team who is the group’s candidate for the chairmanship position, Comrade Churchill Oyowe, among other things, promised to promote professionalism, investments, establishment of an elder’s council as well as the establishment of a newspaper and radio station which, according to him, will help to engage some floating members of the NUJ in the state.  Oyowe maintained that “A vote for the Prize Team is a vote for development, a vote for quality, a vote for enhanced progress.”

Comrades Efidhere Omamuzo and Freedom Okpubeku who responded on behalf
of the Ughelli Correspondents Chapel spoke in the affirmative and urged them to remember their promises if they win the election.

The eleven members of the Prize Team that visited included Comrades Churchill Oyowe, Victor Sorokwu, Patrick Ochei, Theima Eliogu and Balogun Mabamije.