Rivers State governor, Nyesom Wike has issued a quit notice to Daar Communications, owner of African Independent Television (AIT) and Raypower radio station to remove its housing facilities at Ozuoba area of Port Harcourt, else it will be demolished.
The notice, signed by Ebere Dennis Emenike, Permanent Secretary of the Rivers Ministry of Works Government dated Tuesday, March 21, claimed that the building is one of the structures marked for demolition in Government Reserved Area (GRA) Phase 5 in Port Harcourt.
“Following the imminent commencement of GRA Phase 5 project the structures are impacting on the Right Of Way have been earmarked for demolition, including your own.
“Consequently, you are by this notice requested to remove Structures within 48 hours to allow for speedy progress of work,” the notice read.
Appealing to the situation, the Rivers State Council of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), urged the state government to open a negotiation channel with the media organisation for a peaceful resolution.
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The appeal is contained in a press statement jointly signed by the State NUJ chairman, Stanley Job Stanley and Ike Wigodo, the Union’s secretary.
Noting that the land on which the station was built has been a subject of dispute between the State government and Daar Communications, the Council appealed for a review of its position.
“We appeal to the Rivers State Government to review the quit notice given to Daar Communications Plc, owners of AIT and Raypower Radio Station.
“The Press and the Rivers State Government have come a long way as partners in progress. We believe that proper negotiation and peaceful resolution of the land dispute will serve the Government and people of Rivers State better.
“Whatever the merit of the quit notice by the Rivers State Government to Daar Communications Plc, we would not want the world to see the press in fight with the Rivers State Government in view of our long standing mutual relationship.
“NUJ will not be happy to see a Media House in Rivers State being demolished over a land dispute that can be resolved peacefully and amicably”, the statement read.