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Sunday, 29 November 2015

Online Journalists Decry Intimidation From Security Operatives

Online journalists under the auspices of Association of Online Media Practitioners have decried what they say is the continued intimidation and harassment of online media journalists across the country.
The group in a statement in Abuja signed by its chairman, Wole Arisekola, which was made available to LEADERSHIP Weekend said it is unacceptable the way security operatives have continued to clamp down on online journalists.
Arisekola said while professional journalists try to do their legitimate job of information dissemination, the environment in which they operate is becoming more hostile for media work.
“I think I am not comfortable now with what is happening in Nigeria with our professional colleagues, I mean the online journalists. You write something about someone that is in bad light, that person can take you to court, it is not a criminal offence but a civil offence but now am so surprised that DSS, is what the politicians are using to intimidate people.
“I have taken the matter to the Inspector General of Police, we’ve never had it so bad in Nigeria where people will be taken to police station, detain there, taken to court, prison, why? When someone writes something about you and you think it is illegal, it’s a libel case and not a criminal offence,” Arisekola said.
He lauds the media for not compromising on freedom of speech and expression even as he lamented the activities of bloggers who are always in the act of flouting copyrights laws.
He said professional journalists using online platforms have always adhered to the press laws of Nigeria in the discharge of their duties.

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