The former President of the Nigerian Institute of Public Relations (NIPR), Senibo Sofiri, Bobo Brown has appealed to the Rivers State Government to evolve policies that would promote the sustainability of the state-owned Newspaper Corporation (RSNC), “The Tide, so as to enable the newspaper serve the purpose for which it was established.
Senibo Sofiri Bobo Brown made the appeal during the lecture session of the programme of events to mark the 40th anniversary of the establishment of the newspaper corporation held at the Atlantic Hall of Hotel Presidential, Port Harcourt last Friday.
The former NIPR boss who chaired the lecture session explained that the Rivers State Newspaper Corporation (RSNC), The Tide was established by the first Military Administrator of the old Rivers State, Commander Alfred Diete-Spiff as a platform to bear the identity of the state in the then contemporary Nigerian society.
He stated that The Tide was established to be the voice of the southern minorities and served as an avenue for which the state could compete among other states in the country.
According to the former president of the NIPR, The Tide also serves as a torch bearer to the people of the state, adding that the Southern Nigeria used the establishment of various state print media to maintain their identity in the country.
“Our people tried to be heard through political participation, struggle to exist but of no avail. We have The Chronicle, Observer and The Tide, all were created to bear the identity of the region and give life to the people,” he stated.
He called on the state government to assist the corporation especially in the area of finance to enable it keep the faith of the founding fathers alive, adding that the corporation reminds the people of their history in the emerging Nigerian nation.
The chairman commended the management and staff of the corporation on the 40th anniversary celebration and urged them to continue to keep the spirit alive.
In his address at the event, the General Manager, Rivers State Newspaper Corporation (RSNC), Mr. Celestine Ogolo stated that the newspaper remains unarguably the only surviving and thriving state-owned newspaper in Nigeria.
Mr. Ogolo noted that the newspaper had operated in consonance with the dictates of modern information and communication technology, and had rightfully assumed its place as the authoritative voice of the Niger Delta which is a fulfillment of the dreams of the founding fathers.
The general manager disclosed that the RSNC was established by Edict No 11 of 1971 by the then Military Administrator, Commander Alfred Diete-Spiff which propelled the first launch of copy of the newspaper in Lagos on December 1, 1971 while the actual marketing and circulation of the newspaper started on December 4, the same year.
He recalled that the newspaper had led other newspapers in the early 70’s due to the robust government’s funding and the state of the art facilities it had, adding that the corporation had over the years been the major lubricant, catalyst and driver of the development paradigm of the state.
Mr. Ogolo lauded the founding fathers for their dreams that led to the establishment of the paper, adding that at 40 years of its existence, both the government and the people of the state should be delighted and proud that the newspaper had survived and met its mandate to Rivers State.
The general manager, while thanking various successive governments of the state for their efforts in keeping the newspaper afloat at a time when all government-owned newspapers in the country had either gone under or were managing to retain their sizeable staff assured that the newspaper would continue to fulfil its objectives to the people despite the huge challenges facing it.
Earlier in their separate lectures presentations, entitled “media-oil industry partnership for sustainable Development and the state media: the way forward presented by professor Ben Naanen and Mr. Ray Ekpu.
In his presentation, Prof Ben Naanen defined sustainable development as any development that meets the needs of the present without compromising he ability of future generations to meet their own needs.
He said given by the role of the media, the media would over has been vocal in exposing he environmental crimes of oil companies likening such relationship between the oil companies and the media as analogous to that between cat and the mouse.
However, he said the media can help in shaping and in generating awareness of oil companies especially in community solid responsibility programmes.
Mercy Awari & Beauty Abraham
NDLEA Intercepts 100,000 Bottles Of Codeine Syrup At Onne Port
The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency, (NDLEA), has intercepted and seized no fewer than 100,000 bottles of codeine syrup with a total weight of 15,325 kgs at the Onne seaport, Port Harcourt, Rivers state.
NDLEA Director, Media and Advocacy, Mr Femi Babafemi disclosed this in a statement issued at the weekend in Abuja.
Babafemi said that the 100mg illicit cough syrup with codeine packed in 500 cartons and concealed in a container marked MRKU 1565305, bearing made in India imported face masks, was discovered on Thursday, 10th June.
The syrup was found in a warehouse at the Onne port complex during a joint examination by officers of the Nigeria Customs Service, (NCS) State Security Service and the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control, (NAFDAC), among others, he added.
He said that the seizure followed intelligence received by the NDLEA, as a result of which the container was detained and moved to the Customs’ government warehouse within the port complex.
The NDLEA spokesman added that no importer or agent had, however, come forward to claim the container, but that efforts were ongoing to track the owner for further investigation and prosecution.
Babafemi quoted the Chairman, (NDLEA) retired Brig. Gen. Buba Marwa as hailing the synergy between various government agencies at the Onne port.
He charged them not to rest on their oars as they continued working hard daily, to keep Nigeria safe.
In particular, he commended the Commander, officers and men of the Port Command in the Rivers capital, and their Abuja airport Command counterparts, for their vigilance and commitment to the task of ridding Nigeria of illicit drugs.
“The damage 100,000 bottles of codeine could have done to our youths, if they had slipped through the port to our villages, towns and cities, is unimaginable. 146.95 kgs of khat could have done the same damage if allowed to go unto our streets.
“We’ll continue to motivate our officers and men so that they can give their best in the discharge of their responsibilities across the country,” he said
“We will ultimately, with the support of all our stakeholders and partners, win the battle against illicit drug trafficking and abuse”, he said.
21st Century Business: Company Harps On Digital, Smart Office Technology
The General Manager, Sales and Marketing, Xerox H.S. Nigeria Limited, Mr Femi Abidoye, has stressed the need for digital printing press as well as Smart Office operations in order to adjust properly in the 21st century office documentation system.
Abidoye, said this during the company’s business exhibition titled “ Digital Printing Press, Smart Office Technology Products And Electronic Document Management System ‘EDMS’ held in Port Harcourt recently.
He noted that the company has made the issue of work from home a reality.
According to him, the Covid-19 pandemic had actually challenged the people on the need to consider work from home a better business option, which he said the company was handy to provide solution.
The Xerox’s General Manager, Sales and Marketing, further said that his company has been in the forefront of sermonising against analogue system to the digital system.
By: King Onunwor
Finima Seeks Host Community Rights From NLNG
Finima community has decried neglect and poor corporate social responsibility by the Nigerian Liquified Natural Gas(NLNG), insisting that the gas multinational has failed to recognise them as host community.
The protest staged by the community was peaceful until some youths alleged to be from Bonny attacked the protesters, unleashing violence and vandalising properties worth millions of naira in the area.
As at the time of writing the report, nine persons were wounded in the attack and were hospitalised.
Speaking on why the community held the protest, an elder of Finima Community, Mr Dagogo Lambeth Brown said for over 30 years the community was relocated for the LNG plant in the early 90s, the community had been sided in terms of hosting rights.
Brown stated that despite having signed an MOU (Memorandum Of Understanding) with the community, NLNG has reneged on what he called legacy issues. Some of the legacy issues include resettlement of indigenes from their ancestral land now used as site for NLNG, environmental, health, education and employment.
He said, “as at today there is nothing to show for hosting LNG on our land…even we have internally displaced persons in Finima.”
Woman Leader in the community, Mrs.Victoria Brown recalled that the community gave land to the federal government to build the multinational gas firm but today the firm has failed to honour and rexognise their host.
Another community woman leader, Mrs Kabaka Brown said many youths are not employed as part of the MOU.
“ We have master and doctoral degree holders who have no jobs. The jobs they give us is cleaners and security men,” she said.
On his part, Youth Leader and former Chairman of FinimaYouth , Ala Hart decried that NLNG has made billions from it soil while the community suffers.
Mr. Hart explained that the major issues of contention forms part of the Community Content Guidelines, which NLNG do not implement.
He noted that the Community Content Guidelines is part of the Nigerian Content Development Monitoring Board established by law.
The guidelines covers employment, environment, health and general welfare of host communities which the gas giant does not implement.
Reacting to the development, the NLNG General Manager, External Relations and Sustainable Development, Eyono Fatayi- Williams said the multinational gas firm had always considered all stakeholders in the community as partners.
“ NLNG remains full committed to sustainable development in the kingdom, hinged on active community participation to drive initiatives and projects that positively impact the lives of the community,” he added.
By: Kevin Nengia
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