The International Press Centre (IPC), says it is outraged by the detention of Premium Times reporter, Samuel Ogundipe as well as the Editor-In-chief, Musikilu Mojeed and the Education Reporter, Azeezat Adedigba on Tuesday.
IPC Director, Lanre Arogundade, in a statement made available to DAILY POST, said while Mr. Mojeed and Ms. Adedigba were released after being arrested, detained and harassed, Mr. Ogundipe was still being held.
He noted: “IPC is particularly dismayed that the Police authorities want Mr. Ogundipe to disclose the source of information over a story published by the newspaper on a correspondence between the Inspector General of Police and the Vice President.
“This, to us, is a clear assault on press freedom and a clear threat to the safety of the detained journalist and his colleagues.
“The Police Authorities are also hereby reminded that the Freedom of Information Act, a federal law, enacted in 2011, in Section 16 subsection C confers on the media ‘Journalism Confidentiality Privileges’and as such should desist from engaging in unconstitutional acts.
“We condemn the arrests and detention of the concerned journalists and hereby demand the immediate release of Mr. Ogundipe.”
Similarly, the Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) has condemned the arrests
Its Director, Prof Ishaq Akintola, in a statement sent to DAILY POST, condemned the attempt to coerce journalists performing their legitimate duties.
It read: “The police know the rules. The Fourth Estate of the Realm deserves a conducive atmosphere to carry out its daily routine of informing and educating the people about government’s activities.
“The impression must not be created that we are in a police state. A Gestapo-style intimidation of journalists stifles freedom of expression.
“The police can still carry out its duties in a professional manner without curtailing freedom of movement and without undermining freedom of speech. Democracy comes under threat when reporters work in an atmosphere of siege.
“We therefore demand the immediate release of Samuel Ogundipe and an apology for the manhandling of the Editor-in-Chief of Premium Times”.