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Imo newsaper vendors embark on indefinite strike over harassment

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Imo State-based newspaper vendors in the 27 local councils of the state on Tuesday, commenced indefinite strikes action to protest incessant harassment, arrest, detention, and torture of their members.

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Imo State Chairman of the Newspaper Sales Representatives, Udofia Alex Imoh, told The Guardian that the vendors embarked on strike because of the manner security operatives, especially, the policemen were disallowing the vendors from selling newspapers.

HI can confirm that the newspaper vendors in Imo State have commenced on indefinite strike from today,” Imoh said. “This is as a result of the ill manner we are treated by the policemen in the state.

“This will continue until the matter of incessant arrest, detention, manhandling and torture of the vendors in this state by the policemen and security agents.”

Imoh said a meeting was going on to review the issues that led to the clamping down of newspaper vendors in the state.

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The strike commences a day after the Intelligence Response Team (IRT) of the police released Imo State Sales Representatives of the New Telegraph Newspapers, Chuks Ugwuibe, was released after seven days in detention.

Also, four out of five vendors arrested at number 5, Rotibi Street, Owerri, by the said security agents, were released on Monday.

Our correspondent gathered that a vendor, simply known as Sacatan, was still detained at the time of filing this report.

Ugwuibe was arrested at Banana Junction, Orlu, when he went to collect money real from his vendors after selling their newspapers in the area. He was detained without access to his family, relatives, colleagues, and associates.

His wife, who was pregnant, reportedly developed high blood pressure. In the process, a cesarean surgery was done on her and made her deliver prematurely.

Imoh and the Southeast bureau editorial official of New Telegraph, Steve Uzoechi, told The Guardian on Tuesday that they were relieved to know that Ugwuibe was still alive after his ordeal in the hands of the policemen.


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