Elombah News Publishers Dragged To Court By Nigerian Police Over IPOB Article
The Online Publishers Association of Nigeria, (OPAN) has accused the Nigeria Police of intimidating and harassing its journalists over their constitutional right of the freedom of expression. The group made this known in a statement issued on Wednesday.
The statement is a reaction to the case of two of its members whom the police alleged to have conspired to commit terrorism offenses and cyber crime over an opinion article published on their website which they saw as uncomplimentary and offensive.
The duo who are publishers of Elombah News; Messrs.’ Timothy Elombah and Daniel Elombah charged by the Police are set to be in court on Thursday over claims of terrorism, cyber crime, cyber stalking, cyber bullying and for “championing Biafra terrorism”.
OPAN, therefore, calls on the police to withdraw the allegations without further delay and to stop harassing its journalists for carrying out constitutionally backed assignments.
“OPAN is worried by the police’s claim that these journalists carrying out their social responsibility, which is enshrined in the constitution, intend to “create native war and lead to breakdown of law in the country.” This claim is not only ridiculous, but also disgraceful of the police force under the care of Mr. Idris.”
Read the statement below;
“It is laughable that the police force under whose watch 110 female teenage students were kidnapped from their dormitory at the Government Girls Technical Science College, Dapchi, Yobe State, can shamelessly descend so low to the extent of filing fabricated charges against the two journalists who are contributing their own quota to National development,” OPAN said in the statement.
“The reputable media organization has stated that they have nothing to do with the publication in question, because it was neither written by the Editor or Publisher or any staffer and there is nothing in Elombah.com that promotes terrorism in Nigeria.”
“It is to be noted that the online medium has published series of articles against the activities of Boko Haram in the country and other acts of terrorism, so linking it with the activities of IPOB is a joke taken too far.”
“For clarity, OPAN restates that Elombah.com is a responsible media organization. It is not a terrorist organization and neither is it “championing Biafra terrorism”.