Army cracks down on Nigeria media

Ng armyFrom EMEKA OKONKWO in Abuja, Nigeria
ABUJA, (CAJ News) – RIGHTS groups have appealed to the United Nations to dissuade
the Nigerian government against the clampdown and harassment of journalists.
The urgent appeal follows the arrest of publishers and reporters from a prominent
online publication critical of the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari.
Dapo Olorunyomi, publisher of the online newspaper Premium Times, and the judiciary
correspondent, Evelyn Okakwu, have been arrested.
This is the latest in a series of alleged violations by the Federal Government, the
Nigerian Army, police and several state governments against online newspapers and
Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (Serap) and the Nigerian Union of
Journalists (NUJ) have sent an urgent appeal to David Kaye, UN Special Rapporteur on
the promotion and protection of the right to freedom of opinion and expression, to
Adetokunbo Mumuni, Serap executive director and Abdulwaheed Odusile, President of
NUJ alerted Kaye to government’s erosion of media freedom and continuing readiness
of its agencies and state governments to limit the operation of online newspapers
and bloggers.
“The arbitrary arrests would seem to mark an intensification of a crackdown on media
freedom that has been going on for some time now,” they said.
The Army had accused the online newspaper of ‘unwarranted serial provocative,
unauthorised, libellous and defamatory publications’ against Army head, Tukur
Buratai, and counter-terrorism operations in the North East.

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