A Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO), Baywood Foundation on Thursday, donated food items and protective equipment to the Nigeria Union of Journalists, (NUJ) Enugu State Council.
The Country Director of the foundation, Mr Chukwudi Ojielo, said that the gesture was in recognition of the fundamental role of the media in daily news reportage.
Ojielo said that the foundation was not unmindful of the fact that journalists were providing essential services under the Coronavirus (COVID-19) regime.
He said it was sad that in the distribution of palliatives, the government and many organisations directed their attention towards health workers, forgetting journalists whose roles in the COVID-19 crisis were indispensable.
He said that the role of the media could not be underestimated as they functioned to provide daily reports which helped members of the public to keep abreast of happenings in the country as it related to COVID-19.
“We understand the place of the media in the fight against COVID-19 and we want them to know that they are not left behind. That informed our decision to provide these palliatives,” Ojielo said.
Responding, the NUJ Chairman, Mr Rex Arum, said that the gesture was unprecedented in the history of the union in the state.
Arum said that many journalists in the country had fallen while providing reports in recent times, adding that such sacrifices were usually not appreciated by the government.
“I am particularly overwhelmed because it has never happened like this before that you will you have a group that is thinking about the place of the media in the society,” he said.
Arum said that journalists in the state would continue to partner with the foundation in all of its activities.
Also, the Acting National Vice President of the NUJ in the South East, Mr Kenneth Ofoma, said there was no doubt that journalists were next to health workers in the fight against the deadly virus.
Ofoma appealed to the government to include journalists in its insurance scheme given the critical role they played.
He also requested that media practitioners be included in the stabilisation funds to help them remain afloat even after the COVID-19 period.
Some of the items donated included 50 bags of Rice, 50 cartons of noodles as well as 50 face masks.