Home NEWS CRIME Nigeria Police Sliding Into Despotism, Says Guild Of Editors

Nigeria Police Sliding Into Despotism, Says Guild Of Editors

AdesinaNigeria Guild of Editors has accused Nigeria Police, especially the Abia state Command, that stormed the Lagos home of Associate Editor of the Sun newspaper, Mr. Ebere Wabara, abducted him and moved him to Umuahia.
The Guild said this is relapsing into colonial mentality and sliding into despotism.
In a statement, the deputy national President, Aishatu Sule described the abduction of Mr. Wabara as a crossing of the line by the police, from civility to despotism.
Mr Wabara, who doubles as Special Assistant, Media, to former Abia State governor, Dr Orji Uzor Kalu, has since been taken to Umuahia, where he is to be arraigned on charges of sedition.
Aisha said the editors were completely stupefied at the conduct of the Abia State Police which she said has decided to exhume a colonial law from the statute book at a time like this.
“It tends to indicate that while the rest of the country is moving forward, the police in Abia are marooned in an inglorious past.
“If Mr Wabara has broken any law of the land through his writings, the decent thing to do is to invite him to make explanations. If such explanations are unsatisfactory, he should then be charged to court.”
The NGE boss said that for police to have stormed his come in commando fashion, and whisked him hundreds of kilometres away smacks of a country yet to come to the realities of democratic rule and civility.
“We cannot afford to remain consigned in such inglorious morass.
The Nigerian Guild of Editors calls for the immediate release of Mr. Wabara, and if he then needs to answer any question, it should be done according to civil and decent norms. “The media, alongside other patriotic institutions, fought for
the democracy the country enjoys today. “We, therefore, call on President Goodluck Jonathan, the Inspector-General of Police, M.D Abubakar, and other well- meaning Nigerians to intervene, and ensure that sanity prevails.
Also, the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) condemned the arrest of Wabara and called for his immediate release.
A statement by the national secretary, Shuaibu Usman Leman
Reads: “the arrest and detention of veteran Journalist, Ebere Wabara by the Police on the orders of the Governor of Abia State, Chief Theodore Orji clearly shows
that Nigeria, after about 15 years of uninterrupted democracy, is yet to move away from the anti democratic legal practices that characterized its former
military regimes, where indiscriminate arrests and prolonged detentions were
the order of the day.
The Associate Editor of  The Sun Newspapers , was arrested yesterday in his house in Lagos, detained briefly at the Aguda Police station also in Lagos
before being transferred to Abia State and detained, to be charged with sedition.
We are further worried that this arrest and detention runs contrary to common sense and the law. It is also our contention that no responsible government,
especially the one likes ours that continues to pride itself on its democratic
credentials should be seen to be arresting and detaining its citizens
indiscriminately. If this act of impunity is allowed to continue, none of us will feel free and secure.
It is unfortunate that the government of Abia state had openly shown its bias in this case as everything conceivable is being done to frustrate the release of
Ebere Wabara and to prolong his detention while his family continues to be
psychologically traumatized.
We vehemently protest over and repudiate the actions of government and authorities who make a mockery of the freedom of expression and commitments
to pluralism and democracy when they encourage a culture of impunity and
lawlessness against the media.
Holding Journalists like Wabara clearly carries the imprint of Military regimes, and we hasten to caution our Leaders who are beneficiaries of the struggle by the media to entrench democracy to avoid such acts of impunity if we desires to
succeed in our quest for national development, and the import of this must never be lost on such Leaders.
Release Wabara unconditionally and the time to stop such acts of impunity is long overdue.

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