Tinubu congratulates Anaba, says Editors’ Guild election exemplary
President Bola Tinubu, on Saturday, congratulated the newly-elected President of the Nigerian Guild of Editors, Eze Anaba, describing the electoral process as exemplary for the Nigerian polity.
“By its peaceful and rancour-free conduct of elections to elect its new officers, the NGE has sent a resounding message to the larger Nigerian polity that elections for desired offices can be intensely competed for without degenerating into bitterness, acrimony and needless malice,” a statement signed by Tinubu’s Special Adviser on Special Duties, Communications and Strategy, Dele Alake, read Saturday evening.
At its 2023 Biennial Convention in Imo State on Friday, June 16, the Guild elected Anaba, the Editor of Vanguard Newspapers. He polled 250 votes to defeat his sole contender, Bolaji Adebiyi, formerly of ThisDay Newspapers, who scored 81 votes.
Anaba succeeds Mustapha Isah of the Silverbird Group, whose two-year tenure ended.
Tinubu said it is most gratifying that the outcome was successful and rancour-free despite the intensity of the contest for the various positions competed.
He said it is of the utmost importance that the various unions in the newspaper industry such as the NGE, Nigerian Union of Journalists and the Newspapers Proprietors Association of Nigeria imbibe the ethos of internal democracy in support of professional integrity for the benefit of good governance, stability and sustainability development in Nigeria.
“The NGE has, in this regard, made a strong statement for the Nigerian media as a worthy exemplar,” said the President.
In this regard, Tinubu commended those who lost out in the elections at various levels such as Adebiyi for accepting the outcome and pledging support for the winners.
“This is a light that the NGE is showing that the rest of us may find the way to a mature, tolerant, stable and sustainable democratic culture,” he said.
However, the President noted that the challenges ahead of the media in playing its role towards strengthening Nigeria’s democracy, keeping power continually in check as well as promoting good, responsible and accountable governance are greater than the paths traversed before.
Going down memory lane, Tinubu highlighted the media’s epochal role in the struggle against colonial imperialism, been intimately intertwined with the fate of the Nigerian state and her people.
“The press was active in the struggle against military dictatorship in post-colonial Nigeria and this opposition to autocracy was particularly exemplified in the fierce opposition of patriotic media practitioners to the annulment of the June 12, 1993 presidential election won by the late Chief MKO Abiola.
“It is impossible to write the history of the democratic benefits we have enjoyed since the commencement of this dispensation in 1999 without emblazoning the heroic contributions of patriotic sections of the media in gold,” he observed.
Beyond the emergence of new leaders, Tinubu reasoned that the larger picture is to ensure that the Guild members place the profession in a prime position to continually fulfill its constitutional obligation of serving as a watchdog of the people in checking the excesses of government and promoting the greatest good of the greatest number of our people.
Therefore, he pledged the support of his administration in collaboration with the media towards achieving “these lofty objectives in the best interest of our country.”
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