Connect with us


Osun NUJ Crisis: NSCDC Cordons Off Press Centre, Bars Journalists from Holding Congress



By Segun Adeyemo

The crisis rocking Osun State Council of the Nigerian of Journalists (NUJ) took a new dimension on Thursday as officers of the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) cordoned off the NUJ Press Centre and barred journalists from holding congress.

Acting Chairman of the Osun NUJ, Comrade Kehinde Ayantunji had last Tuesday been arrested and detained by the police on the order of the National President of the union, Mr Waheed Odusile before he was later released on the intervention of some stakeholders.

The NUJ members led by Ayantunji were bid to hold a congress at the press centre on Thursday but they were denied entry to the council secretariat by the armed to teeth NSCDC officers who claimed to be acting on the order of superior officers.

Osun NUJ Acting Chairman Kehinde Ayantunji addressing the NSCDC and DSS officers.

Osun NUJ Acting Chairman Kehinde Ayantunji addressing the NSCDC and DSS officers.

According to the security agents, there was report that some journalists were coming to the centre to ‘disturb the peace of the public’.

To prevent the imaginary trouble, the NSCDC officers had arrived at the press centre as early as 7am and cordoned off the premises, manning the entrance of the NUJ and prevented people from entering the secretariat.

CityMirrorNews learnt that the two-man member of purported caretaker committee single-handedly appointed by the NUJ National President Waheed Odusile had approached the security agency with the false report, with the sole aim of preventing the congress from holding.

The matter resorted into serious argument between members of the NUJ and the security agents.

A representative of the Director of Security Service (DSS) Osun Command, aggravated the situation when he told Ayantunji that he was attempting to cause trouble and that he does not have the right to the NUJ property.

Aggrieved members of the union responded to the statement of the DSS officers with strong words, affirming the legitimacy of Ayantunji to act as the Acting Chairman in line with the resolution of a congress held in May this year.

After some minutes, the NUJ members and the security officers resolved the issue and Ayantunji was allowed to address the journalists at the entrance gate of the press centre.

Thereafter, Ayantunji led members of the NUJ to the office of the Commandant of the NSCDC, Mr J.O Ayodele to inform the security agency on the true position of the union.

Ayodele, six other top officers of the state NSCDC and two men from the DSS office received the newsmen and listened to their various positions on the union.

The NSCDC commandant also invited the two-member caretaker committee.

After hearing the stories from the two parties, Ayodele promised to handle the matter with fairness, transparency and fear of God, promising that the security agency would not in anyway be partisan on the matter.

However, the two parties were advised to meet and find a way of resolving the crisis and feed back the security agencies.

The development was aftermath of the leadership crisis which had engulfed the union since February 11, 2016 election of the union, where Mr. Biodun Olalere emerged the winner as chairman.

The winners immediately took oath of office supervised by all National Officers of the union led by Vice President, ‘B’ Zone of the union, Mr Cosmos Oni.

But a month later, the NUJ National President, Waheed Odusile annulled the election, hinging his action on petition he allegedly received from Oni and some other people.

Since then, the union had known no peace because majority of the members rejected the annulment of the election and the constitution of the so called caretaker committee whose members included signatories to the said petition.

The national secretariat of the union led by Odusile had since been directing the affairs of the caretaker committee he allegedly imposed on the members of the union and mandated the two- man committee to takeover the NUJ Press Centre at all cost.

The caretaker committee has been surreptitiously approaching all security agencies in the state with aim of preventing the Acting chairman to perform his duty, by always alleging that he wanted to foment trouble with the guise of holding congress at the press centre.

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *