Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?


MRA tasks federal government on safety of Guardian journalist

Media Rights Agenda (MRA) says the Federal Government and relevant law enforcement and security agencies should investigate the attempted abduction of the Abuja Correspondent of The Guardian newspaper.

Technocrat Media, Lagos

Media Rights Agenda (MRA) says the Federal Government and relevant law enforcement and security agencies should investigate the attempted abduction of the Abuja Correspondent of The Guardian newspaper.

Saying the government should ensure that nothing untoward happens to him, Mr. Oludare Richards.

In a statement issued in Lagos on Monday, Mr. Ayode Longe, MRA’s Programme Director, called on the Federal Government as well as the relevant law enforcement and security agencies to conduct a thorough investigation into the incident and to ensure that no harm befalls Mr. Richards.

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.

Mr. Richards is reported to have gone into hiding following an encounter with unknown men whom he suspects to be security agents whom he allegedly attempted to abduct him.

According to him, while he was returning to his house in Abuja, a black Hyundai bus drove towards him obviously trying to cut him off and that two men jumped down from the vehicle and chased after him as he ran.

“He said he was able to escape with the help of a body spray with which he was able to prevent them from catching him. As a result of his fear that the would-be abductors might be security agents, he did not report the incident at the police station and has also gone into hiding rather than returning home,” Mr Longe said.

“He deprecated the frequent practice by law enforcement, security, and intelligence agents of abducting journalists, human rights activists, and other citizens on the streets or in their homes without following proper and lawful arrest procedures, saying this has made it difficult for citizens to distinguish between criminals, including kidnappers, attacking them and law enforcement officials seeking to arrest them.”

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.

MRA’s director of programmes asked the Federal Government to put an end to such practice by providing law enforcement officials with appropriate training about lawful arrest procedures and taking drastic action against those conducting unlawful or improper arrests.

He said: “The lawless and sometimes criminal behavior of many law enforcement agents makes it difficult for law-abiding citizens, including journalists, to know whether falling into their hands is any less dangerous than falling into the hands of plain criminals. This has made the terrain for journalism practice doubly treacherous for journalists in an environment of widespread insecurity where they are frequently under attack from criminals, supposed members of law enforcement agencies, and other government officials, with all of them behaving the same way and employing the same tactics.”

He noted that MRA was extremely concerned about Mr. Richard’s safety and wellbeing. He reminded Nigerian authorities that they have a constitutional responsibility and an international treaty obligation to ensure his safety. He called on the Government to live up to its responsibility.

Excellent journalism is expensive. It is only the same that can help to build our society and country to entrench good governance, development and ensure justice for all.

We need your support for investigative findings and special reports to demand accountable and transparent government. DONATE today to help us stay relevant to serve your quest for accurate and authentic stories.

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.


Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Like Our Facebook Page

You May Also Like


Media Rights Agenda (MRA), says the Federal Government should take decisive action to combat corruption in the country by empowering citizens with information.


Media Rights Agenda (MRA) has secured the permission of a Federal High Court in Lagos to compel the Attorney General of the Federation and...


Former President Goodluck Jonathan has advocated full compliance with the 'Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) as the panacea to the growth of fake news...