MARKETING EDGE’s Publisher bags NUJ Media Icon Award

By Felicia Nwosu

The Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) has honoured John Ajayi, Publisher and Chief Executive Officer of MARKETING EDGE, Nigeria’s foremost marketing and brand-centric magazine, as one of the nation’s media icons. Mr. Ajayi was bestowed with the prestigious award alongside other veteran journalists and media owners at the maiden edition of the Annual Milestone Recognition of Media Icons in Nigeria.

The high octane event, which had Aremo Olusegun Osoba, seasoned journalist and former governor of Ogun State  as the chairman, was held at the Muson Centre, Onikan, Lagos and attended by the ‘who is who’ in the media industry.

Mr. Ajayi, who was recognised for his outstanding and remarkable contribution to the growth of the industry as pioneer of the brands and advertising genre of journalism where he is not only a veteran, but the publisher of the foremost and most authoritative magazine, MARKETING EDGE, could not hide his elation. He expressed profound gratitude for the honour done him by the NUJ, a network of media professionals established to advance the safety and welfare of Nigerian journalists.

“I am overwhelmed and humbled by this recognition. Journalism has been my passion and vocation. This is the profession to which I have dedicated my entire professional life. While I was just doing my bit as a journalist and a publisher, I didn’t know the world, and indeed, the custodian of our dear profession in Nigeria is taking note of these modest efforts. To be honoured and sharing the podium with veterans such as Sam Amuka-Pemu, Aremo Olusegun Osoba, Nduka Obaegbena (my former publisher), Chief Raymond Dokpesi, Dr. John Momoh and my mentor, Bayo Onanuga, is an experience to be treasured for a lifetime. It is very humbling,” the man of the moment enthused.

Taking a rear-view mirror approach to his career trajectory, Mr. Ajayi said: “I am grateful to God because I know how the journey started. Though I have always aimed for excellence through hard work and doggedness, the truth of the matter is that the race is not for the swift or the surefooted. It is by God’s mercy and grace; and for this, I am eternally grateful.”

Explaining the reason for organising the award, Chief Chris Isiguzo, President, NUJ, said that journalists are seldom recognised and least celebrated despite their immense contribution to national development.

“This is an effort to blow our own trumpet just as we have been blowing it for others.” He added that the recognition is not just for media entrepreneurs alone but for professionals who have distinguished themselves in the course of duty and devotion to the growth of journalism.

“This award was designed to honour topflight media entrepreneurs who have invested their time, talent and treasures in the nation’s media industry. Beyond this, they have been able to invest in human capital development of future professionals for sustainable media growth. This media concept stemmed from the disturbing scenario, where iconic media personalities remain unsung and unappreciated until their demise. The NUJ strongly believes this should not continue; hence they must be celebrated while alive,” Chief Isiguzo said.


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