National Union of Somali Journalists (NUSOJ)
Official Name and Headquarters
1. The National Union of Somali Journalists, hereinafter named as “the union”, is a trade union.
2. The union shall have its headquarters in Mogadishu and may have headquarters after, when, the executive committee decides.
1. To defend and broaden the freedom of the Press, which is the freedom to gather information, the freedom to impart information and the freedom of opinion without meddling.
2. To preserve and support trade union principles.
3. To represent journalists in all places where topics relating to the profession are in discussions.
4. To normalize and develop relationships involving the employees and employers.
5. To negotiate and support the agreements of disagreements arising between employees and employers by pacification, mediation or otherwise safeguard the interest of the members.
6. To strive and seek out services for members to obtain skills training.
7. The protection and development of freedom of expression and democracy to enable the citizens to express their feelings liberally at any time.
8. To move up the importance of journalism in the society by implementing a professional code of ethics.
9. To promote a courage of cooperation and unity among Somali journalists.
10. The protection and backing of public justice, civil liberty and peace.
11. The elimination of favouritism on the basis of clan, gender or disability.
12. To protect and promote the rights of freelance journalists.
13. To defend the common interest of the nation and the coexistence of the Somali people.
14. To promote the rights of women journalists and not to discriminate them in the media, and to guarantee their appearance in all structures of the union.
1. No government/administration can prevent the freedoms of press and expression;
2. No restriction on starting media outlets;
3. Presenting news without following the required procedures is prohibited;
4. No pay for any publication except private advertisement; and
5. Not serving for any particular clan or gender;
1. The membership of the union shall be open to anyone involved in journalistic profession.
2. The Union shall have following members:
i) Full members: the full membership shall be admitted to all working journalists such as: reporters, writers, journalists working for news agencies, sub-editors, press photographers, assistant editors, freelance journalists who have no full time work and press officers who are doing journalistic duties. All full members, nominated by their branch, have the right to attend and vote the union general assembly and at any other union meeting invited, and have the right to hold office and to get all benefits offered by the union.
ii) Associate Members: the associate membership shall be admitted to journalists who have the power to hire and fire any member of the journalistic staff. All associate members have no right to vote at the union general assembly and to hold office, but have the right to attend at the union General Assembly after when they receive invitation from the secretary general. They also have the right to get the union press card.
iii) Honorary Members: The executive committee may award honorary membership on any member in the Somali society in recognition of his/her contribution to the work of the union. He/she shall be given press card.
3. Every application for membership shall be made on the forms provided by the executive committee.
4. Selection shall be by vote of a branch management meeting.
5. The branch shall submit the result of their decision to the executive committee.
6. Where the appropriate branch is deemed by the executive committee to be inactive, the executive committee shall make the selection of submitted application.
7. Any branch shall not elect a person believed by the executive committee not to be appropriate person for membership.
8. The executive committee shall have the power to reselect any member whose membership application has been rejected according to the constitution.
9. The executive committee shall have the power to cancel and state annulled any selection if it is found that the information given by the candidate is wrong, or that the candidate was not fit according to constitution at the time of selection.
10. A member may come to an end of his/her membership by writing to his/her branch, or to the headquarters if the branch is inactive.
Rights of the Member of the Union
• To participate in all programs of the union;
• To participate in meetings being discussed the activities of the union, to pass judgment on activities of branches/chapels and to advocate the judgment;
• To elect and to be elected for elective positions of the union.
• To participate the activities of the union for defending of the labor, social, economical rights and legal interests;
• To relate to the officers of the union with a question, announcement on any problems related to their activity;
Responsibilities of the Member of the Union
• To abide the constitution of the union;
• To execute his/her job not contradicting to this constitution;
• To pay membership fees as prescribed by the executive committee;
• To care of reputation of the union;
• To be in solidarity with colleagues;
Sanctions of the Member of the Union
The member of the union, who violate this constitution, shall be punished by the branch of the member or executive committee, and the punishments are:
ii) Losing of a position, if he/she holds a position;
iii) Exception from the elective positions;
iv) Exception from the membership
The union shall be structured as follows: chapels, branches, executive committee, supreme council and general assembly.
1. A General Assembly (GA) shall be held once every year at such time and place as decided by the Executive Committee.
2. The General Assembly shall have the highest decision making power of the union.
3. The Secretary General shall call together the General Assembly after making consultations with the supreme council by giving 4 weeks notice to each branch.
4. The General Assembly shall be composed of:
i) Voting delegates who are members of the supreme council and delegates elected by the branches, and
ii) Nonvoting members who are associate and honorary members of the union.
5. Each branch shall appoint its delegates in proportion to its officially registered members, and are as follows:
Branch Members Number of Delegates Number of Votes
10-14 1 1
15-19 2 2
20-24 3 3
25-29 4 4
30-34 5 5
35-39 6 6
40-44 7 7
45-49 8 8
50-54 9 9
55-59 10 10
60 + 11 11
6. The quorum of the General Assembly shall be 50% of the official delegates plus 1 delegate.
7. A delegate provisionally not present from the assembly may transfer his/her official document to any other delegate and give permission him/her to cast the vote on his/her behalf
8. The General Assembly shall be held for the reasons of receiving the presentation of the report of the secretary general, setting working principles of the union, amending the constitution and election of national officers.
9. The Secretary General shall prepare the Agenda for the General Assembly.
10. Motions for discussion at the General Assembly shall be sent to the Secretary General not later than ten days before the date of the General Assembly.
11. The Secretary General may take an amendment proposed in the course of debate, if he/she rules that it has arisen as a result of the discussion.
12. The General Assembly shall receive, talk about and vote on the report of the Secretary General.
13. The General Assembly shall decide plans and the programme for the next year.
14. All elections at the General Assembly shall be by secret ballot.
1. The Supreme Council (SC) shall be the central body of the Union. It shall be responsible for the directions of the Executive Committee who shall be committed the daily management of the Union.
2. The Supreme Council shall be composed of Chairperson, Senior Vice Chairperson, two vice Chairpersons, members of the executive committee and the chairs of the branches.
3. The Supreme Council shall meet at least once in every six months.
4. The chairperson shall convene and chair the meetings of the supreme council.
5. The chairperson, the senior vice chairperson and the vice chairpersons of the supreme council shall have the right to attend the meetings of the executive committee and regional meetings in order to know how the business is conducted.
6. The senior vice chairperson and the vice-chairpersons shall assist the chairperson in carrying out his/her duties, and shall replace him/her if the chairperson dies, resigns or two-third of Special General Assembly or general assembly state his/her disentitlement to continue the office.
7. The senior vice chairperson and the vice-chairpersons shall vacate the vacancy if he/she dies, resigns or two-third of Special General Assembly or general assembly state his/her disentitlement to continue the office. If a vacancy that emerges between meetings of the General Assembly, the chairperson shall be asked to propose a candidate from the full members of the union.
8. The chair of a branch shall vacate the position if he/she dies, resigns or the view of the _ of the members of the supreme council or _ of branch members state his/her disentitlement to continue the office. Subsequently, the vice chair of the branch shall succeed to his/her position in the supreme council.
9. The General Assembly shall elect chairperson, senior vice chairperson and vice chairpersons for a period of three years. The current chair of the SC who was elected by the 2004 General Assembly shall finish the remaining term of office.
10. Between meetings of the General Assembly the supreme council shall interpret the constitution, when necessary, and determine any point on which the constitution is not mentioning.
11. The Supreme Council shall have the power to approve or disapprove the financial plan submitted by the executive committee, signing agreements and the authorization of joining national and international levels.
1. The union shall have administrative members called the Executive committee.
2. The Executive Committee shall be in charge for the administration of the Union.
3. The Executive Committee shall consist of the Secretary General, Organizing Secretary, Secretary of Gender Issues, Treasurer, Secretary for trainings, Information and Human Rights Officer, Secretary for Ethics, Secretary for Labour and Secretary for Public relations.
4. The Secretary General shall be elected by the General Assembly, and shall hold the office for a period of three years.
5. The remaining members of executive committee shall be elected by the General Assembly, and shall hold the office for a period of three years.
6. The Secretary General shall vacate the position if he/she dies or resigns. The remaining members of the executive committee shall temporarily elect among them the acting secretary general who shall hold the office for a period of 30 days, and shall call special general assembly to elect the secretary general that shall hold the office for the remaining period.
7. When two-third of the members of the supreme council vote for the removal of the secretary general from the position, a special general assembly or normal general assembly shall be held. If two-third of the delegates of the special general assembly or the normal general assembly vote for the removal, the secretary general shall, therefore, cease to hold the office. The members shall at the same time elect the person who shall hold the office for the remaining term of office.
8. The remaining members of the executive committee shall vacate the vacancy if he/she dies, resigns or two-third of the views of the members of the executive committee state his/her disentitlement to continue the office in terms of this constitution. If a member vacates a position in the executive committee, the secretary general shall propose a candidate. The candidate shall hold the position if he/she receives the affirmative vote of 2/3 of the members of the executive committee for the remaining term of office.
9. The Executive Committee shall have its meetings at such times as may be suitable.
10. The Secretary General shall chair and summon all meetings of the EC.
11. Every decisions of the Executive Committee shall be compulsory on the Union.
12. The quorum for the Executive Committee shall be five.
13. The executive committee shall each year lay down financial plan of the union.
14. The executive committee shall have power to order the production of the Records and Accounting books of a branch or other union institution at any time for the purposes of investigation.
Titles of Union Officers
1. Secretary General
i) The Secretary General shall ensure that all decision taken by the executive committee and supreme council are implemented.
ii) The Secretary General shall issue notices of all conferences and meetings of the union.
iii) The Secretary General shall have the power to sign documents on behalf of the union.
iv) The Secretary General shall take all necessary decisions for the running of the union.
v) The Secretary General shall speak on behalf of the union.
vi) The Secretary General shall work as the Chief Executive Officer of the Union.
i) The Treasurer shall be responsible for Union funds and shall keep and maintain all necessary books of account.
ii) The Treasurer shall ensure that no payment is made from Union funds under his control unless a payment voucher has been prepared and authorized.
iii) The Treasurer shall prepare and submit to the General Assembly a report of the financial position of the Union, together with a statement of income and expenditure and balance sheet during the financial year of the union, which shall be 1 January to 31 December before the General Assembly.
3. Organising Secretary
i) The Organizing Secretary shall carry out such duties as may be assigned to him by the Executive Committee or Secretary General.
ii) The Organizing Secretary may attend Conferences and meetings of the union and shall be eligible to vote at such conferences or meetings.
4. Secretary for Gender Issues
i) The Secretary for Gender Issues shall be the connecting person of the union and female members.
ii) The Secretary for Gender Issues shall assist the women wing to carry out their duties.
iii) The Secretary for Gender Issues shall take leading role for the promotion of women journalists in the union.
5. Secretary of Trainings
i) The Secretary of Trainings shall be responsible for the improvement of journalism education in the union.
ii) The Secretary of Trainings shall present to the executive committee the educational needs of the members of the union.
6. Information and Human Rights Officer
i) The Information and Human Rights Officer shall be responsible for the management of the union’s official information.
ii) The Information and Human Rights Officer shall monitor, record and report violations against freedom of press, freedom of expression and the rights of journalists.
7. Secretary for Ethics
i) The Secretary for Ethics shall be responsible for the promotion of the ethical standard of the members of the union.
ii) The Secretary for Ethics shall supervise the practicing of professional code of ethics adopted by the GA.
8. Secretary for Labour Issues
i) Secretary for Labour Issues shall be responsible for the monitoring and the protection of labour rights of the members of the union.
ii) Secretary for Labour Issues shall work on the agreements between the employees and the employers.
9. Secretary for Public Relations
i) Secretary for Public Relations shall be responsible the relations between the union and the other sectors of the Somali society.
ii) Secretary for Public Relations shall represent the union at gatherings when designated by the executive committee or the secretary general.
1. The union shall be divided into branches and each member shall normally be attached to an active branch.
2. The supreme council may create, divide or merge branches.
3. Every branch shall not be less than 10 members.
4. Each branch shall elect its chair, vice chair and secretary.
5. Each branch shall hold its general assembly before the union’s general assembly.
1. Every three or more members working with same employer in the same area shall form a chapel.
2. Chapel shall elect a head of the Chapel and secretary.
3. The head and the secretary of a chapel shall represent its members with the guidance of the supreme council and the executive committee.
Union Press Card
1. Every member shall have the right to get the press card of the National Union of Somali Journalists.
2. The Executive Committee shall decide the price of the press card and the duration of the card.
The Executive Committee shall by decree have the power to appeal all members or any group of members to leave their labour in case of a disagreement arising, on condition that such decision is voted at a meeting of the Supreme Council called for that purpose and provided that such decision has received the support and endorsement of the greater part of the members of the supreme council.
1. This Constitution may be amended at any duly called meeting of the general assembly of the union.
2. Amendments to the Constitution may be proposed by the Executive Committee, by a vote of a majority of members of the Executive entitled to vote, or by fifty members of the union by petition to the Secretary General.
3. Proposed amendments shall be submitted by email, fax or telephone to each branch not less than 15 days before the meeting at which they are to be considered.
4. To be adopted, a proposed amendment to the Constitution must receive the affirmative votes of two-thirds of the GA.
Duration and Dissolution
1. The National Union of Somali Journalists shall exist for a limitless period.
2. The union may be dissolved by two-thirds of the GA.
1. No officer or member shall receive personal financial gain or otherwise profit from official acts of the union.
2. In the event of dissolution of National Union of Somali Journalists, the Executive Committee shall transfer all assets remaining after payment of all outstanding debts to any not-for-profit organization with similar journalistic objectives.