Sowore, CSOs Protest At Police HQ, Demand Immediate Release Of FIJ Journalist, Daniel Ojukwu

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A Coalition of Civil Society Group under the auspice of Action Group for the Protection of Civic Actors and a human rights activist, Omoyele Sowore yesterday in Abuja staged a protest at the Force Headquarters to demand for the release of Daniel Ojukwu, a journalist with Foundation for Investigative Journalism (FIJ), who has been in custody since Wednesday, May 1, 2024.


The Groups describe his detention as an clear violation of his fundamental rights, also calling on the Inspector General of Police (IGP) Egbetokun to use his office and immediately release him.




He was transferred from Lagos to Abuja on Sunday May 5 and is being investigated by the National Cybercrime Centre (NPF- NCCC) for alleged Cybercrime violation following a petition written by one Adejoke Orelope-Adefulire, Senior Special Assistant on Sustainable Development Goals ( SDG ) to the former President Muhammadu Buhari.

Speaking on behalf of the coalition, Bukky Shonibare said free press and public participation are fundamental pillars of our democracy.


The group expressed concerns regarding press freedom and shrinking civic space in nigeria just as they vowed to continue to occupy the building until the journalist is released.

According to her “ Civil society organizations across the country are deeply concerned about the growing cases of attacks on press freedom, and the flagrant abuse of due process and the rule of law by the Nigeria Police under the Inspector General of Police, IGP Kayode Adeolu Egbetokun.


Action Group on the Protection of Civic Actors, a Nigerian coalition of media and civil society groups working alongside international allies, sounds the alarm on the recent surge in attacks on press freedom and the silencing of dissent and civic voices.

The CSO said, a free press and public participation are fundamental pillars of our democracy. Thus, the continuous silencing of journalists and civic actors who hold power accountable undermines the provisions of Sections 22 and 39 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended), which guarantees freedom of the press and freedom of expression, respectively.

“Daniel Ojukwu's case is the most recent in a recurring trend of similar attacks and harassment aimed at the media and other civic actors by Nigerian law enforcement and security agents. The familiar pattern these attacks seem to take is that the instrumentality of the Nigerian security apparatus is set loose on these individuals as soon as they express views unfavorable to the administration or in the case of journalists, as soon as they publish credible stories that cast the administration in an unflattering light.

“Consequently, we unequivocally condemn Daniel's abduction and unlawful detention as unconstitutional, illegal, immoral, and unbecoming in a country that claims to practice democracy. We maintain that for Nigeria to claim its status as the continent's largest democracy, its institutions and law enforcement agencies must uphold established standards and procedures consistent with democratic norms.

Until then, Nigeria cannot reconcile the title of the “largest democracy in Africa” with the practices and principles reminiscent of a police state.”


Meanwhile, Sowore said the Nigerian police under the leader of Kayode Egbetokun have continued to demonstrate its impunity and blatant disregard for the rule of law and democratic principles.

He therefore called in the Inspector General of Police to order immediate release of the just or face a nationwide mass action.

He reminded the police of the amendment of Cybercrime Act 2025 by the National Assembly which he said the police has no right to charge any Nigerian including journalists with cyberstalking.

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