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Controversy Regarding The Constitutional Amendment Continues In Nigeria

In Nigeria, controversy surrounding efforts to amend the constitution continues unabated. If adopted, the amendment will allow President Olusegun Obasanjo to extend his term of office from the constitutionally stipulated two terms. Now the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) is weighing in on the matter. One branch has condemned any amendment that would extend the tenure of any person holding office.

Joy Idam, who serves as Assistant Secretary General for the Nigeria Union of Journalists Abuja Council, is also the Abuja bureau chief for the Niger Delta-based Service Newspaper. Idam tells English to Africa reporter James Butty that the Nigerian Journalists Union remains divided on the third term issue. “Two weeks ago in Abuja, the national body of the Nigeria Union of Journalists met, and when the issue of a third term was raised the house was divided. Some were for and some were against. But I am aware that there are some media who are against the third term and there are some who are in favor of the third term.”

Idam says it is important for the Union to take a position on the third term conteroversy. “Everybody knows that as Nigeria is enjoying democracy today the media fought for it; NUJ also fought for it using its members. And so it is only natural that the NUJ should also take a position. We shouldn’t stay on the fence.”