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Premium Times reporter Samuel Ogundipe released by police

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Samuel Ogundipe PHOTO: PREMIUM TIMES

Premium Times reporter, Samuel Ogundipe arrested by Nigerian Police force on Tuesday has been released.

Ogundipe was freed on Friday after he was granted bail by magistrate Abdulwahab Mohammed of the Kubwa Grade 1 Magistrate Court in Kubwa, Abuja.

Premium Times said Ogundipe was held for publishing a report sent to acting president Yemi Osinbajo by the inspector general of police, Ibrahim Idris, on events that took place at the National Assembly on August 7.

Masked armed operatives of the State Security Service (SSS) blocked access to the Senate and House of Representatives, preventing lawmakers from entering workers, journalists and other visitors from entering.

No official reason was given for the siege but independent sources speculate it was heavy-handed political manoeuvering ahead of presidential and parliamentary elections next February.

The Nigerian Union of Journalists, local and international rights bodies have called for Ogundipe’s immediate release.

Journalists are frequently threatened in Nigeria, a country that was under military rule for decades before becoming a democracy almost 20 years ago.

Jones Abiri, another Nigerian journalist, was detained for two years without trial over allegations he was linked to militants in the oil-rich Niger delta.

After a public outcry he was finally arraigned in an Abuja court this week.

Abiri, the publisher of Weekly Source magazine, is due to appear in an Abuja court on Friday for a hearing.


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