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Imo NUJ can’t endorse a jail-bound hustler for national president — Executives

The attention of the Imo State Council of Nigeria Union of Journalists has been drawn to a report in a section of the media purporting that the Union in Imo has endorsed Mr. Chris Isiguzo for a second tenure as National President of NUJ.

This unfounded claim did not come to us as a surprise, considering the fact that Isiguzo had created a team of non-practitioners and a crude assortment of rag-tag charlatans running errands for him in Imo State while posturing as journalists.

These drifters are led by one Chris Akaraonye who retired as a level 8 civil servant from the Imo State Ministry of Information in 2015 and who should ordinarily associate with his fellow retirees in the Nigeria Union of Pensioners, NUP Imo State Chapter to demand their rights.

In a statement signed by the Council caretakers committee Chairman, and Secretary Comrade Precious Nwadike and Comrade Austin Okoro noted, it is unthinkable for any genuine journalism practitioner in Imo State to contemplate endorsing Chris Isiguzo for a second tenure, given the anguish the greed-driven hustler has caused the Imo Council.

According to the statement, “It is no longer news that Isiguzo in 2018 conspired with some criminal elements, mainly non-journalists in Imo to sell Imo NUJ Secretariat located along Port Harcourt Road without the consent of the Congress.

“They went further to vandalize the secretariat and carted away valuables. It took the intervention of the congress to frustrate their rabid desperation to loot and trade-off our secretariat to any available off-taker.

“Today, we are daily in the battle for recovery of our secretariat from Isiguzo and his goons.

“Fortunately, the council under a caretaker committee has reclaimed some lost ground and assets, and have commenced renovation of the secretariat.

“In decent climes, Isiguzo and his accomplices in Imo should rather be cooling off in prison for vandalizing the Union’s property and attempting to sell it rather than seeking a fresh mandate.

“It is also worthy of note that Isiguzo in his desperate move to sell the Union’s Secretariat relocated the International Institute of Journalism, Owerri Study Centre to an unsafe area where lecturers and students were severally attacked by hoodlums which led to the closure of the school through the directive of the Abuja office,” the statement said

The Imo NUJ again said, efforts made by the Caretaker Committee to relocate the school to its original place to ensure the school reopens are being frustrated by Isiguzo. This he does to pave way for his plan to sell the said property.

“Ironically, Isiguzo for the three years he held sway as national p6resident of NUJ could not leverage on his relationship with Abia State Governor, Okezie Ikpeazu to move the Abia Council in his homeland, to a permanent site but will be quick to orchestrate plans to sell off our secretariat complex worth over N800m and donated to the Union by a former Military Administrator of the State.”

The Imo NUJ views it as a greater danger to the nation’s journalism practice, to re-elect Isiguzo for another tenure. “We have strong belief that if Isiguzo gets a fresh mandate, he will do more harm to the Union than he has already done. He may sell the Abuja office of NUJ like he planned to do to Imo.

“He has total disregard for the constitution of the Union, which apparently is why Isiguzo hired strangers who have no business in journalism to aid him perfect the plans to sell the secretariat.

“As if that was not enough, when Union members kicked against such move, he came to Imo State and declared them as hoodlums when in fact, we in Imo, consider Isiguzo and every other person who participated in such brazen roguery as the original hoodlums and should be dealt with by the law enforcement agents.

“Against this backdrop, NUJ in Imo State is unanimous that such a place and time, where the Imo NUJ will endorse a candidate in the mould of Chris Isiguzo for a second term as NUJ President, does not exist!

“We move! The statement added.