. promises open door policy, prioritizes members’ welfare
By Taofeek LAWAL, Abuja
Newly elected chairman of the FCT chapter of the Sports Writers Association of Nigeria (SWAN) Bunmi Haruna has said the priority of his newly-inaugurated board is to focus on health improvement of members and train the veterans on the proper and efficient use of new media in the discharge of their duties.
Haruna, popularly known as Bunmi Blair, is an on-air-personality (OAP) and head of sports at Nigeria Info/Cool FM/Wazobia FM radio stations Abuja had defeated Ndubueze Chidoka of the Federal Radio Corporation of Nigeria (FRCN) to emerge as chairman by 55 votes to 3 votes at a well-attended voting process which held at the FCT NUJ Press Centre, Utako on Friday, June 4, 2021.
Haruna said he is duty bound to reach out to the aggrieved members led by the immediate past chairman of the association, Chidoka, who went to conduct a parallel voting process somewhere in Abuja. According to Haruna, elections come with their intrigues and it is important to reach out and bring everybody back into the FCT SWAN as one single body.
“We are all aware that we are an appendage of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) and the reason they opened their facilities for us to be able to conduct the elections. We must unite the house because the house is not united. If the house is not united, we will not be able to fight on one front and we will not be able to help sports development in the country,” he said.
“There are lots of people-oriented programs that we have lined up. For example, we need to partner with clinics and health care facilities to get medical care for our members, enough of our members dying unceremoniously. We need to create a platform for people to check themselves as often as possible because if you do medical check more often, you will be able to know what is wrong with you. But by virtue of our profession we don’t have the time because we are always on the road and our members complain about money. We want to address this permanently because members’ health remains our priority. The partnership with health providers and professionals will come at a very subsidized rates for members”, Haruna, a member of the national U-15 male team added.
The new chairman said FCT SWAN under his leadership will champion welfarism and support for members through housing project as well as organizing refresher courses for members especially veterans who will be exposed to the usage of the New Media in modern day journalism.
“Most importantly, we want to see that we start the building of FCT SWAN secretariat as well as having cordial relationship with all the sports federations. As someone who is close to almost all of these federations and with my influence, we are going to forge cordial relationships with the federations and this is the time to do that,” he said.
Others who will join Haruna in piloting the affairs of the FCT SWAN for the next three years include Lawrence Nwachukwu of Brilla FM who emerged as Vice-Chairman after garnering a total of 50 votes to defeat Salifu Usman of Leadership Newspapers who got only seven votes.
Chris Onokpegu of NewsHunter polled 53 votes to defeat Ikenna Okonkwo of Blueprint who got five votes to emerge as secretary. Remi Sulola of The Cable polled 52 votes to beat Albert Akota of Peoples’ Daily who got four votes for the position of Assistant Secretary.
Uche Nwudoh of Kiss FM polled 50 votes to defeat Ayo Makinde of NTA who got five votes, to emerge winner of the Treasurer position and Omo Unubun of NTA beat Muhyideen Jimoh of NAN to emerge as the Financial Secretary with 50 votes as against Jimoh’s three.
Barrister Audu Mohammed Lawal later performed the oath of office on the new executive members.