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Police Clarifies Raid on Peoples Gazette Media, Releases Detained Journalists

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Some journalists and staff of the online newspaper Peoples Gazette have been freed by the FCT Police Command.

Officers of the Nigerian Police Force detained them on Friday, July 22, at noon in Abuja in connection with a news report that claimed to have connections between some properties seized by the Independent Corrupt Practices and other Related Offences Commission on suspicion of money laundering and former chief of the army staff, Lt. General Tukur Buratai (retired).

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The publisher of Peoples Gazette, Samuel Ogundipe, verified that the detained journalists and other staff members were unconditionally freed at 6 o’clock in a phone interview with the PUNCH on Friday night.

Ogundipe said;

I can confirm that our reporters and other staff members that were arrested earlier by the police have been released unconditionally. However, the police had just informed us that they came for me as the Managing Editor, and a reporter Adefemola Akintade, who wrote a report on a former Chief of Army Staff, Lt Gen Tukur Buratai (retd.).

Unfortunately, rather than going to court, Buratai decided to intimidate our reporters and staff members by sending policemen to our head office. Now they claimed that there’s a petition against the newspaper accusing it of defaming the character of Buratai. But the truth is that, if Buratai feels that his character was defamed, he should go to court rather than resort to the use of state forces to intimidate our journalists and staff members.

Police Confirms Release

In her statement, the Federal Capital Territory Police Command’s Public Relations Officer, DSP Josephine Adeh,  also confirmed that the arrested journalists and staff members of Peoples Gazette had been released.

DSP Adeh said;

A petition was written against the duo of Samuel Ogundipe and Adefemola Akintade for criminal defamation, injurious falsehood publication of news known to be false, and cyber stalking, contrary to section 391, 392, 393, 395 and 418 of the Penal code and section 24(1) cybercrime (prohibition prevention etc) Act, 2015.

In investigating this case, a duly signed warrant of arrest was obtained and presented to effect the arrest of the duo. Their statements have been taken and they have been granted bail, while investigation continues.

 

 

 

 

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