The Rivers State Government has reiterated its commitment and interest to see that all accredited practicing journalists in the State are given the needed cooperation to enable them deliver on their jobs.
The State Information and Communications Commissioner, Mrs. Ibim Semenitari who gave the assurance yesterday during an official visit to the office of the Federated Correspondents Chapel on Ikwerre Road, stated that she is proud of the favourable Press friendly disposition of the present administration to the welfare of journalists in the State.
Mrs. Semenitari explained that the rumour that the State government preferred some media houses to others was totally unfounded and in bad taste as far as the Amaechi-led government is concerned.
She enjoined not only members of the Correspondents Chapel but the entire media constituency in the State to discountenance the activities of rumour mongers and concentrate to work for the progress of the State.
The Commissioner who used the opportunity to commend those who have continued to report stories about the State professionally, advised that it was entirely unethical for a story to be put out without due confirmation from those who are expected to do so.
On the complaint that some Commissioners and heads of government agencies hardly take their calls to clarify stories about their agencies, Mrs. Semenitari assured that she would do everything officially possible to change the ‘situation for the good of the State.
Earlier in his address the Chairman of the Federated Correspondents Chapel, Mr. Lawson Heyford had commended the Commissioner for the visit and assured of the Chapel’s preparedness to work as partners in progress with the Information and Communications Ministry to move the State forward.
Meanwhile, as part of her policy thrust to motivate staff and encourage hardwork and dedication to duty, the State Commissioner for Information and Communications, Mrs. Ibim Semenitari on assumption of duty late last year instituted a staff of the month Award Scheme for the Ministry and its Parastatals.
A total of six staff drawn from the Ministry and its parastatals were the first batch of beneficiaries of the Award Scheme.
The beneficiaries for the month of December, 2009 include Messrs Owupele Benebo and Faa Lekara of the Publications and Accounts Department of the Ministry respectively.
Others are Mr. Austin Tolofari of Rivers State Newspaper Corporation, Kingsley Okeagwu of the Rivers State Television Station and Isaac Esuka of Rivers State Broadcasting Corporation as well as Maxwell Gbode of the Government Printing Press.
Speaking to newsmen in her office on the importance of the Staff of the Month Award initiative, the Commissioner, Mrs. Ibim Semenitari said that the Scheme was put in place to set a new performance agenda for Information Officers and other career staff in the Ministry and the Parastatals.
Mrs. Semenitari who stated that it was not compulsory that there must be winners each month, said the key idea behind the scheme was to make Information Officers and their counterparts in the government-owned media acknowledge and effectively rise to the occasion to deliver on their duties as public sector communicators, irrespective of the departments where they are redeployed to serve.
She therefore enjoined those who did not make it in the month of December 2009 to do their best to win in subsequent months and congratulated the maiden winners of the Staff of the Month Award, stressing that they should sustain the tempo of work.
PH City Marathon: Over 3000 Athletes To Run, Saturday
Over, 3000 athletes are expected to take part in the 16 kilo meter Port Harcourt City Marathon Race this Saturday.
Take off point is scheduled be Forces Avenue, by Christ Church, back of SPAR shopping Mall, in Port Harcourt, by 7:00am.
Speaking in an exclusive interview with Tidesports, on Saturday, shortly after athletes collected their numbers of participation , at Las Mall Hotels and Resorts, Rumukalagbor, the Chief organiser of the event, Goodluck Azunwena, said all arrangements had been concluded for the event on Saturday.
According to him, over 200 volunteers, have indicated interest to ensure that the race was successful, adding that various medical outfits, doctors, road safety officers are fully prepared, as health talks was also delivered to athletes.
“ The crowd was really overwhelming today. Honestly we are really impressed with the turnout, that means many athletes were waiting for such event.
As I speak, so many volunteers have indicated interest to work with us, private hospitals have also pledged to give out their ambulances and doctors to be on ground that day. We have also contacted the road safety, police and other security agents to ensure a hitch-free race” Azunwena said.
He advised athletes not to take the competition like a do or die affairs saying that they should exhibit what sports stand for, that is unity, friendship and love.
Speaking, one of the intending competitors, Jude Nwanaopara, a footballer, said he is optimistic to win the race, in spite of the fact that this would be his first time to compete in a long distance race.
According to him, if he comes up top he will use the money to solve his personal problems.
“ I am optimistic that I will win the race being a sportsman, but I must say that this is my first time to enter such competition.
“I have self prophecy that I am going to win” Nwanaopara said.
Another competitor, student, Victor Okoro, said he was inspired to go for the race following his walking skill.
He explained that he had been looking for such opportunity to run marathon race to showcase his talent, saying that he is happy that what he was looking for will happen in Port Harcourt.
“ I have the belief that I will win because I have been walking from school to my house for three hours , which is more than that 16 kilometer,” Okoro said.
By: Tonye Orabere
‘Competing With Asisat Oshoala For Award, Great Honour’
Team Lagos Taekwondo Poomsae gold medallist at the Edo 2020 National Sports Festival, Aminat Idrees, said she felt honoured to be competing with Super Falcons captain, Asisat Oshoala, for the Most outstanding young person in sports award.
Idrees turned poster girl of the festival after pictures and videos showing her competing with pregnancy and winning gold in the taekwondo event went viral online.
Tidesports source reports that the organisers of the Lagos Youth Awards unveiled the nominations list for the debut edition of the event with Idrees making the nomintion.
In a chat with newsmen, Idrees said being nominated alongside the Barcelona Femini forward is an honour but also expressed the desire to beat the Falcons captain to the award.
“It is an honour to be nominated for a state award, especially being placed alongside Barcelona footballer Asisat Oshoala,” she said.
“I hope for the best.”
When asked if she stands a chance of beating Oshoala, she said, “There’s nothing impossible with God.”
Other nominees in the most outstanding young person in sports categories are Anuoluwapo Opeyori (Olympian, Badmington) and Seun Nariwo (Former Table Tennis champ, Sports Administrator).
Nigerian skit maker and activist, Debo Adedayo, popularly known as Mr Macaroni tops the list with three nominations while football star and Oshoala have two nominations.
According to the organisers, the event will come up on Boxing Day, December 26 at Sheraton Hotel, Lagos.
NHRC Receives Over 400 Sexual, Gender-Based Violence Reports In 11 Months
The Bauchi State office of the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has revealed that it received no fewer than 814 human rights complaints between January and November this year, out of which over 400 were on sexual and gender based violence.
The State Coordinator of the Commission, Barrister Dala Yachit, made the revelation at a one-day public lecture on “ICT as an instrument for enhancing national security and economic recovery”.
The lecture, organised by Youth and Civil Society Coalition for Development (YCSCD) in collaboration with the National Information Technology Agency, was held on Monday at for North-East states.
Responding to a comment made by the representative of the Bauchi State Commissioner of Police, Yachit said that crimes had to be fought within the ambits of the law, noting that the Police Act and the Administration of Criminal Justice Act (ACJA), 2015 were there to guide the police in the discharge of their work.
“In fighting crime, you must do that within the law. The (National) Human Rights Commission is not stopping the police from carrying out her lawful activities but you must do it in line with the law, what the Police Act says you can do and what you can’t do and what the Administration of Criminal Justice Act says.
“Even arrests, how do you arrest? You must tell a person why you are arresting him. You don’t handcuff, you don’t subject the person to inhuman treatment. Arrest someone in line with the law and treat him with dignity,” Yachit, who was the chairperson on the occasion, said.
The NHRC State Coordinator asserted that the police does not have to forcefully elicit information from a suspect, submitting that, “that information you want, if the law says don’t forcefully check someone’s phone and you do that, I can assure you, when you go to court, that evidence will be thrown out of the court because you did not access that document through the legal means.”
She informed that through the commission’s cordial working relationship, awareness and sensitisation, complaints against police personnel in the state had gradually reduced.
“For example, when we came in 2019, most people did not know much about human rights in Bauchi, we started in February and by the end of that year, we had just 72 complaints and out of those 72 complaints, over 50 were against police officers.
“Last year, it was the same thing, but because of the sensitisation and awareness to the people, as of Thursday last week, we had 814 human rights complaints, just in Bauchi and out of this, over 400 were on sexual and gender based violence.
“So, you can see the reduction of complaints against police officers and it is because of our working relationship and the awareness and sensitisation,” she said.
Yachit declared that every aspect of human life had to do with human rights, adding that ICT plays a vital role in human rights as it could not be removed from human rights.
She said “ICT opens doors and creates avenues for a lot of information. It is through ICT that we get to know what is going on regarding human rights.
“You can beam the searchlight on human rights abuses, you can get in touch with victims of human rights abuses. So, you can’t remove ICT from human rights.”
Speaking earlier, the National President of the group, Aminu Aminu in
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