The Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria, HURIWA, has condemned the arrest of a Punch Newspaper reporter, Solomon Odeniyi at Dunamis International Gospel Centre.
HURIWA called on President Muhammadu Buhari to order the release of the Odeniyi.
Olaniyi was identified and whisked away by security operatives while carrying out a live video in the church.
Reacting, the right group lamented that the Buhari-led government was systematically installing a full-blown dictatorial regime in Nigeria.
In a statement by Comrade Emmanuel Onwubiko, National Coordinator and Director of Media Affairs, Miss. Zainab Yusuf, the right group, accused Buhari’s government of finding obscene satisfaction in violently denying media workers their rights to practice their legitimate duties.
The statement reads: “We want the international community to take special note that there is an ongoing move to install a full-blown dictatorial regime in Nigeria, and the steps adopted against the media are in tandem with a systematic approach to institutionalization of tyranny in Nigeria. The World must stop Nigeria from collapsing because once dictatorship takes firm ground, the nation will inevitably collapse.
“The journalist, Mr. Solomon, who was carrying out his job when he was identified and whisked away, has not been allowed to either pick his calls or contact anyone.”
HURIWA said it is totally absurd, crude, primitive, reprehensible, and is an indescribable and egregious assault on the constitutional democracy that we claim to be practicing.
“We call on President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration to order the release of the PUNCH correspondent, and we ask the government to stop all kinds of coordinated attacks against media freedoms and media practitioners because the media is an essential element of constitutional democracy without which we will slide into anarchy and tyranny of one man’s brute force and dictatorial oppression and suppression of the fundamental human rights of the citizens of Nigeria who by law made clear in the Constitution under section 14 are the owners of the sovereignty of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and who have donated the legitimacy to government officials to exercise authority for a tenured period after which they must hand over to another set of elected officials who have the mandate of the people of Nigeria.”