Home / Arts & Entertainment / Why I wrote THE JOURNALIST, THE WOMAN AND HER FAITH – Grace Yussuf (See pictures from the event)
Mrs. Grace Yussuf

Why I wrote THE JOURNALIST, THE WOMAN AND HER FAITH – Grace Yussuf (See pictures from the event)

Mrs. Grace Yussuf and representatives of UNIDO.
Mrs. Yussuf with representative of the Indian High Commissioner and the representative of HRM Orodje of Okpe Kingdom,, Chief Barrister Godwin Emagun
Mrs. Yussuf with the representative of the Chinese Ambassador
The Author with Pastor Steve Oluyombo of RCCG
Mrs. Yussuf with some of the Very Important Personalities at the event
Mrs. Yussuf with the Hallelujah Women of the Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG). Pastor Comfort Sule is 2nd from right.
Mrs. Yussuf with her twins
The Author with her in-laws

Being the welcome address by Mrs. Grace Yussuf at the Public Presentation of her Book, The Journalist, The Woman and Her Faith, (Memoir of a Female Nigerian Journalist) on May 9, 2023, at the National Press Centre, Abuja


The decision to write this book came out of a desire to document my experiences as a female journalist and a practicing Christian, who promised herself that doing so would serve posterity well. I believe that it will not only be good reading for many but will also go a long way to encourage younger female journalists, who may be finding it difficult to cope, especially if they had to hold on to their faith and values.

It is my intention too, that this book will serve as a story of resilience, hard work, moral rectitude, a journey of faith and adherence to Christian virtues even in the practice of an utterly socially-relevant profession as journalism. I say this because there is this general belief that journalists are unserious and frivolous. This puts women in a precarious position as it makes them more ‘vulnerable’ than their male counterparts.

For a female/Christian journalist, this vulnerability could be both internal and external and may thus eventually affect one’s life, marriage and the profession itself. As we often say that perception is powerful and the way the world sees a thing goes a long way in defining that thing whether right or wrong. To dispel such an opinion once formed, will take eternity. Therefore, it is better to avoid creating unnecessary opportunities for women to be spoken ill about just because of their calling or the profession they practice.

I want to salute the courage of veteran women journalists such as Dr Mrs. Abike Dabiri-Erewa, the Chairman/CEO of Nigerians in Diaspora Commission (NiDCOM), Chief Mrs. Moji Makanjuola, Mrs. Euginia Abu, among others for their passion, resoluteness and perseverance in the journalism profession. They made their marks and have continued to be sources of inspiration to women journalists to break the ceiling in the profession.

I also recognize some other women journalists, especially in NAN, who were doing great jobs behind the scenes. Mrs. Nkechi Okoronkwo, a retired Managing Editor of NAN and Madam Funke Lawal, are a few that made their marks in the profession and mentored many younger female journalists in the NAN newsroom. Not to mention our late MD, Mrs. Oluremi Oyo, who was an icon in journalism. She made huge transformation in NAN. May her soul rest in peace.

This memoir of my foray into the journalism profession is not to teach its methodology, but simply to tell my story of ‘how it all started’ and ‘how I was able to persevere’ in the very difficult terrain of journalism with honour and dignity. It also highlights the numerous challenges and in all, how I completed it successfully – alive and well!

We all have a story to tell, no matter who you are or where you come from. I am sure you will agree with me that no experience is too little, too insignificant, or too big to share or tell.

So, telling or writing your story can be an inspiration or comfort to someone or a group of people in that profession or even elsewhere.

“There is power in allowing yourself to be known and heard; in owning your unique story; in using your authentic voice” is a quote from former American First Lady Michelle Obama that I like to consider always. It came in handy in convincing myself of the need to continue to write in spite of the fact that it was not easy gathering the materials and putting them together.

Many times, I met brick walls in the process of gathering information, especially when I had to rely on third parties. That is why I have to appreciate good people like former National President of NACCIMA, Chief John Odeyemi, and the Director General of SON, Dr John Akanya, among others who scarified their time and took me back memory lane in the industrial sector, which I covered for many years.

However, I can safely say that my journalism journey has been a most purposeful and fulfilling one, considering the experience gained and the enabling opportunity to bring to the front burner, national and international issues as they affect humanity.

The journey gave me the privilege of meeting people, both low and high, in the course of my job; and afforded me the opportunity to visit many states in the country and some capitals of the world.

The book is about the people who impacted my life one way or the other and this is one sure and permanent way to celebrate them and say – ‘Thank You’. I deeply appreciate all my mentors, men, women, old and young, who encouraged me relentlessly. It is my pleasure to tell them that their concern and push have not gone down the drain, but have brought into fulfillment this collection of thoughts served on the pages of this book.

I cannot conclude this address without appreciating the person God used to give me this job – a former Minister of Information, Prof. Sam Oyovbaire. I had told him I needed a job, and he willingly sent me to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) and the rest is history.

MAY, the endearing acronym I use in appreciating my Darling husband, is appropriate in concluding this section of my welcome address. Sweetheart, may I dutifully recognize your amazing touch on every page of this book as I would not have completed it without your encouraging intervention. It is, therefore, a thing of joy to publicly acknowledge you before all. You did not allow me to rest until I began writing and all through the process as you kept encouraging me. I must confess that at certain times in the course of writing this book, your pressure became scary, almost turning into pain, but as you told me every inch of the way: “no pain, no gain, keep at it.”

The “pain” paid off glowingly in the publishing of this book. I am eternally grateful.

For everyone who has found time to be here on this occasion in spite of your other commitments, please note that I truly appreciate your sacrifice and pray God to continue to bless you and your families. I am sure that God will make it happen that you, too, will always have something ennobling to celebrate in your lives and families.

I am also grateful and hereby acknowledge the management and fellow staff of the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) for a very unique and interesting time I spent in Africa’s biggest news agency.

Permit me to also thank the Ministry of Information for allowing me to use this beautiful hall for this historic milestone in my life.

Thank you one and all.

Grace Yussuf












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