By KATO P. LADAN, Kaduna
In response to the yearnings of Sports Writers across Nigeria and in tune with global best practices, the Sports Writers Association of Nigeria (SWAN) has amended its statute to accommodate more sports journalists as full members.
This was contained in a statement signed by its Secretary General, Jude Opara, made available on October 10, 2019.
In the amended Statutes, sports journalists across print, electronic and online media will now be accorded full membership if they possess qualifications in journalism or mass communication and have their outfits registered under relevant Nigerian laws like the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC).
With this development, they are now entitled to vote and be voted for at all levels of SWAN
Also, the previous requirement that intending full members of SWAN must also be members of Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) has now been expunged, while State Chapters of SWAN are to screen members before submitting to the National Secretariat for ratification.
These were part of the positions approved during the Statutes amendment by the National Congress at its meeting that took place at the Auditorium of the Rivers State House of Assembly in Port Harcourt.
It was also the first assignment by the newly elected national executive led by Honour Sirawoo.
To reward industry, service and creativity, new categories of honours have been created to serve as motivation, just as the office of National and State Welfare Officers have been created.
It was agreed that 1st of February every year should be celebrated as Nigeria Sports Journalists Day; just as the Congress approved SWAN Sports Commissions inline with the AIPS organs.
The Amendments came after over two years of painstaking efforts by the Statute Review Committee headed by a former Deputy President, Sunny Ogele.
Coming eleven years after it was last amended, the Statute takes effect from the 8th of October 2019.