Voice of Nigeria (VON), Nigeria’s statutory external radio broadcasting organization, has stepped into a fresh era with the assumption of duty on Tuesday of its new Director General, Mr Sampson Ogbonda Worlu.
Mr. Worlu was appointed Director General of VON by President Goodluck Jonathan on March 4, 2015, to take over from Mallam Abubakar Bobboyi Jijiwa, who retired this month after meritoriously heading the organization for ten years.
The new Director General told management staff at a reception for him at the Radio House Abuja offices of VON that his vision was to build on the legacies of his predecessor with a view to putting VON on a high pedestal amongst international broadcasting organizations.
He expressed his penchant for team work and announced that he would engage the heads of the various Directorates and Departments, comprising News, Programmes, Engineering, Administration & Finance, Strategic Planning and Corporate Development, Information Technology, and Special Duties in one-on-one sessions to chart a new course for the corporation.
Earlier, during a courtesy visit to the Supervising Minister of Information Chief Edem Duke, Mr Worlu pledged to ensure that Voice of Nigeria tells the Nigerian story the Nigerian way thereby changing the narrative and misconceptions propagated by the foreign media about the country.
A First Class Honours graduate of the University of Port Harcourt, Sam Worlu was also at the University of South Africa, Pretoria and the Foreign Service Academy, Lagos, where he studied Political Science and Public Administration; Business Leadership, and Diplomacy and International Relations respectively.
The Director General is not new to public service. He was Senior Special Assistant to President Goodluck Jonathan on Economic and Strategic Matters between 2010 and 2011, after he had served as Senior Special Assistant to the Vice President on Economic and Bi-National Matters (2009-2010).
Between 2007 and 2009, he was the Senior Special Assistant to the Vice President in charge of matters related to the National Economic Council, the National Council on Privatization, Inter-Party Consultative Forum/Committee, the Steering Council of the National Integrated Power Projects (NIPP) among others.
Other career accomplishments
His training at the prestigious Foreign Service Academy positioned Mr Worlu for diplomatic service. He served as Minister-Plenipotentiary (in charge of Consular and Information Matters) at the Embassy of Nigeria, Rome, Italy (2005-2007) and earlier as Minister Counsellor at the same embassy from 2003 to 2005. Before then, Worlu was the Speech Writer and Head of Public Relations in the Office of the First Lady from the beginning of President Olusegun Obasanjo’s administration in 1999 till 2003.
Other significant positions previously held by the VON Director General include:
- Desk Officer/2nd Secretary (information and Consular Matters), Nigerian Embassy, Beijing, Peoples Republic of China (1989-1992)
- Desk Officer Special Analyst on Southern Africa Affairs, 1st Secretary, Office of the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Foreign Affairs in charge of Security Documents and Liaison with Security Institutions (1996-1998)
- Member, National Economic Council’s Technical Committee on Modalities for the Management of Excess Crude Revenue (the committee that did the ground work for the establishment of the Nigerian Sovereign Wealth Fund)
- Member/Secretary of the National Economic Council’s Committee on Remittances to the Federation Account from the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC)
- Member, Technical Committee of the National Council on Privatization (2007-2011)
- Member, National Steering Committee on Nigerian Vision (NV 2020) and four-time delegate to the ECOWAS Initiative on Peace in Liberia from 1995-1998 and was a Presidential Mission Coordinator (PMC) for the President’s State Visit to Turkey in February 2011.
Worlu voluntarily retired from public service in May 2011. Before his current Call-Back-to-Service by President Jonathan, Mr Worlu has been involved in the leadership of some private sector business interests. He is the Chairman of the Board of SIRA Integrated Services Limited (a subsidiary of SIRA Group of Germany), and Chairman, FHL Nigeria Limited.
Born on August 28, 1960, Sam Worlu hails from Choba in Obio/Akpor Local Government Area of Rivers State, Southern Nigeria. A recipient of several quality service awards, including Director General’s Award for Exemplary Service, Commitment and Patriotism, 2002 and 2003, and Special Presidential Commendation for Meritorious Service to Motherland, etc, Mr Sam Worlu is married with children.