The Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) has criticized Gov. Chukwuma Soludo- led administration in Anambra for allegedly closing the Anambra State-owned National Light Newspapers without any reason made public.
The Chairman NUJ Anambra State Council, Dr Emeka Odogwu, told newsmen on Sunday in Enugu that the latest move remained an open ill-treatment of journalists by the Soludo-led administration.
Dr Odogwu said that the latest move also “portrays his government as without human face.” He said: “We frown at the reckless manner in which the National Light Newspapers issue is being handled and call on the staff to be absorbed in the Ministry of Information as anything contrary to the welfare of workers shall boomerang.
“The NUJ cannot understand why Soludo’s government was busy employing other workers but cannot allow less than 100 workers at National Light Newspaper be, even if he does not want to hire more workers or turn around the organisation.
“NUJ seriously appeals for understanding of the government on the issue since its needless making lists of people in NUJ’s 2023 Hall of Infamy. We are calling on journalists across Nigeria and the world to stand up against the injustice against workers at National Light Newspapers who have committed no offence.”
Odogwu, however, said that he reliably gathered that the purported letter of shutting down the newspaper company had been covertly handed to a top management official of the outfit on July 20.
The chairman, however, praised the government for the mature way it is handling the JAMB score scandal, demanding that the National Light Newspaper issue should also be handled in such a manner. Responding, Chief Paul Nwosu, state’s Commissioner for Information and Public Enlightenment, denied such a directive of alleged shut down of the newspaper outfit.
“I am not aware of what he is saying. What you are saying is new to me. If government wants to shut down such an establishment, there will be an official public statement on it. As at the last Executive Council meeting of the state, we did not discuss any issue concerning the National Light Newspaper,” he said.