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Breaking: NGE Election: Egbemode, Ibanga, Others May Emerge

The Managing Director of New Telegraph newspaper, Funke Egbemode, may be returned unopposed as president of the Nigerian Guild of Editors (NGE).

This is coming from the ongoing election at the Lagos Airport Hotel, where just as the guild holding its biennial convention.

Also, likely to be returned unopposed are the General Secretary, Victoria Ibanga, and the Social and Publicity Secretary, Ken Ugbeche.

Ms. Ibanga is the Managing Director of new online newspaper, Next Edition while Mr. Ugbeche is publisher of the Political Economist.

The election is being conducted by a five-member committee led by highly respected journalist and author, Ray Ekpu.

One of the major highlights of the biennial convention is the election of a new executive to take charge of the affairs of the guild during the next two years.

Top on the list of posts contested for are the president of the guild; vice presidents, general secretary; social and publicity secretary and treasurer.

Others are the assistant secretary and standing committees of the guild.

The tenure of the current executive, led by Mrs. Egbemode began with Mr. Femi Adesina in 2015 and was truncated when he was appointed Special Adviser to President Muhammad Buhari, a few weeks after election.

Mr. Adesina handed over to Garba Deen Muhammad, who was the deputy president, and his position was ratified during the 11th ANEC in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State.

A few months after the mantle of leadership changed hands, Mr. Muhammad was appointed Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs Division of Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC).

Again, power shifted to Mrs. Egbemode, who was then the Vice-President (West), and her new position was ratified during the 12th ANEC in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, in 2016.

Meanwhile, Mrs. Egbemode had, during his opening speech at the convention, appealed to the members to have uppermost in their minds, the interest of the guild when voting.

According to her, the task of directing the affairs of the organisation was such that must be treasured so the profession was not dragged in the mud.

She said there was no doubt that all eyes were on journalists and there was the need to carry on with the integrity and dignity men of the journalism profession were known for.

She urged the editors to help wield their power to make the guild and their profession better than they met it.

“My plea to us as we get ready to elect the next set of leaders is to put this guild first and nurture it as we have nurtured other people, other associations and promote it as we have promoted others,” Mrs. Egbemode said.

“As the Yoruba say, the initiates must never allow the sacred things of the oracle fall to the ground in the presence of the uninitiated.”

On the achievement of his executive, she said the body had among other things, opened talks with the Nigerian Institute of Policy and Strategic Studies, Kuru, for partnership and training opportunities.

“As professionals, whose job impacts every facet of our national life, editors are more than qualified to have mni at the end of their names,” she said.

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