Rivers State Governor, Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi has condoled with the Nigeria Union of Journalists and the family of former National President of Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Mr. Ndagene Akwu who died last Friday.
Mr Akwu was said to have slumped and died at the airport in Port Harcourt on Friday.
The governor, who was represented by Commissioner for Information and Communications, Mrs Ibim Semenitari said the governor received the news of Mr. Akwu’s death with shock.
In her words, “The governor was distraught when he heard about the loss of the former President of the NUJ, a true Rivers son. He asked me to come and express his condolence and that of Rivers people to the family of Ndagene Akwu.
“His Excellency is not around, if not he would have been here in person. He wanted the family to know that this is a loss to Rivers State because as you know Ndagene today is the only Rivers man who has been president of the NUJ therefore this is a loss for us as Rivers people and it’s a loss to the union,” she remarked.
She pledged the governor’s support to the union, assuring that the state government will provide support to the family at this trying period.
Meanwhile, the South-South Zone of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) has said the news of the untimely demise of the former National President of the Union, Mr. Ndagene Ndamele Akwu, came as a rude shock to journalists in the zone.
Akwu, who was President of NUJ from 2004 to 2008, died last Friday morning, after slumping the previous day on arrival from Abuja, at the Port Harcourt International Airport, Omagwa, near Port Harcourt.
The Secretary of the union in the South-South Zone, Mr. Edward Ogwude spoke at the weekend when he led the executives of the NUJ in Rivers State, to pay a condolence visit to the Akwu family in Port Harcourt.
Ogwude, who noted that death is a necessary end that will come when it will, said the death of the former National President was a big loss not only to his family, and Rivers State, but to the entire union.
Also speaking, the Chairman of NUJ in Rivers State, Mr. Opaka Dokubo, said the Union has resolved not to abandon the family of the late National President during its period of trial, and prayed that untimely death should not visit the family again.
Dokubo said the state council of the union received the news with great shock.
“The NUJ Zonal Secretary is already in Port Harcourt. We will soon pay a condolence visit to his family,’’ he said.
Responding, wife of the deceased, Mrs. Anthonia Akwu, thanked NUJ for the visit, saying it was difficult to believe that her husband who was hale and hearty when he travelled would be brought back home as a corpse.
Akwu served as the national president of the union from 2006 to 2009. Before then, he had served as vice president, zone F, and chairman, NUJ, Rivers State.
Akwu was until his death a Senior Editor with the Rivers State Television.