The Imo State Chapter Chairman of the National Association of Women Journalists in Imo State (NAWOJI), Mrs Vivian Ottih (Esq), has appealed to the Governor of Imo State for the immediate payment of three months arrears of salary owed staff of the only electronic media establishment owned by the state, Imo Broadcasting Corporation (IBC).

In a special appeal and lamentation over the plight of the affected workers which she addressed to the Governor through his Special Assistant, Modestus Nwamkpa, she pleaded with “the humble and performing Chief Executive Officer of Imo State, Senator Hope Uzodinma” to do everything humanly possible to pay the workers who are presently languishing in hunger and penury following the Covid-19 pandemic lockdown and stay at home orders without further delay.

The NAWOJI Chairman who is presently on her maternity leave expressed disappointment that those who should advise the Governor on the need for prompt payment of workers salaries and wages have so far reneged.

It was against this backdrop that she pleaded with Modestus Nwamkpa as the personal aide to the Governor, to bring pressure to bear on the Governor to do the needful and approve the payment of the outstanding three months salary of the IBC staff without further delay. She could not understand why the three months salary would be withheld this long under the prevailing circumstances.

She added that apart from staff of IBC, other hard working journalists in the state were completely exempted in the consideration and distribution of Covid-19 palliatives, even when they have continued to be on their duty posts, at times molested, harassed and brutalized by the unruly and banditry armed forces especially those at Owerri Central Police Station along Egbu road Owerri, who refused passage to practicing journalists unless they are driving in their official branded vehicles.

The NAWOJI Chairman wrote, “Nwamkpa Modestus my dearest brother, from the blood and water we share as brother and sister, and as colleague in the journalism profession, you are the closest officer of  His Excellency, the Executive Governor of Imo State Chief Hope Uzodinma (Onwa Oyoko) to me. Please, Biko my brother, help me inform our humble and performing Governor, that the entire staff of the only electronic media establishment owned by the state Imo Broadcasting Corporation (IBC) the famous Orient FM and Television have not received salaries for the month of February, March and April, 2020. 

It could be that His Excellency is not aware of this ugly situation.

Mode, my brother and colleague, the worst of the whole scenario is that I your sister who just put to bed barely 3weeks now is languishing in hunger, lack, among others.

During the Covid-19 lockdown era, IBC staff were never found wanting on their duty post doing what they know how best to do on empty stomachs and amidst starvation.

From my Omugwo domain, I learnt that many have fallen sick without any kobo to seek medical services. The situation is as bad as that. Let me stop here so far as we wait for a fast positive response and reaction from His Excellency, Senator Hope Uzodinma (Onwa Oyoko).

May God Almighty lead you as you take up this task and plea to his Excellency, and we will not hesitate to appreciate your efforts in the end”.