NAN MD says staff welfare will be priority

Mr Buki Ponle, the newly appointed Managing Director of the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), has said that the welfare of workers would be his priority.

Ponle, who addressed the agency’s workers on Wednesday in Abuja, also promised to work towards actualising the Agency’s new conditions of service already approved by the board, and currently before the information ministry.

“I will do everything possible to make the workers happy because that is the only way to make them put in their best,’’ he said.

The new managing director also promised that workers would get their entitlements.

“Even if it means sacrificing my salary to ensure this, I am ready to do that,’’ he said.

He promised to work with every member of staff to improve the integrity of the agency so as to restore its past glory.

Ponle also promised to work with the workers’ unions, heads of departments and all critical stakeholders.

“I will be very happy to work with the unions, everyone will be carried along. If the unions oppose any management decision, they must naturally have a reason for doing so.

“The unions are led by good and sensible people who have the interest of the agency at heart. We shall be happy to listen to suggestions from them.

“if you do not sideline them, they will help to advance the agency. They are critical stakeholders we want to share ideas with toward a better NAN,’’ he said.

He said that everybody would be taken care of, but challenged the workers to work optimally to justify the better conditions they were craving for.

Ponle cautioned workers seeking to bring gossips to be ready to defend their tales because he would invite the subjects of their gossips to come for self-defence.

Mr Gambo Suleiman, Chairman of the NAN chapter of the Amalgamated Union of Public Corporations, Civil Service, Technical and Recreational Services Employees (AUPCTRE), who spoke on behalf of the workers, pledged his colleagues’ full support to the new NAN helmsman.

He, however, urged him to remain focused so as not to be distracted by people whose interest was at variance with the agency’s corporate goals and concerns.

Suleiman also advised the managing director against listening to gossips.

“People will bring lots of tales to you. Their interest is usually selfish and could derail your focus. Please sir, do not listen to them,’’ he said.

Earlier, in a meeting with staff of the editorial department, Ponle had promised to provide the facilities required for optimum productivity, and regretted that the quality of reports from NAN was declining.

He also promised to train and retrain reporters and editors, urging them to always adhere to the NAN stylebook, so as to steadily remain on track.

Ponle also advised them to work harder, pointing out that their output would determine the relevance of NAN in the country’s information dissemination chain.

Mr Idonije Obakhedo, the Editor-in-Chief, in a remark, called on reporters and editors to be more meticulous and always remember the fact that NAN was the most credible news source in the country. (NAN)