Nigerian journalist detained for writing ‘offensive’ story against SSS – NUJ

Nigerian_SSS

The Nigeria Union of Journalists, NUJ, Kogi council, has dragged the State Security Service, SSS, to a Federal High Court, Lokoja, over ‘unlawful’ arrest and continued detention of its member, Friday Ogungbemi.

Mr. Ogungbemi, a Lokoja-based journalist and publisher, was arrested and detained by the SSS, also called DSS, on November 30 over alleged offensive publication in the November 23 – December 15, 2016 edition of the Policy and Lawmakers magazine.

The NUJ, which filed the suit on behalf of the journalist, is seeking enforcement of his fundamental human rights and N5 million damages for unlawful incarceration and infringement on his fundamental rights.

The NUJ’s counsel, J.U. Usman, filed the motion on notice on Tuesday.

Mr. Usman sought four reliefs, including an order enforcing the journalist’s rights to personal liberty, freedom of movement and fair hearing being violated by the respondent since Nov. 30.

He also sought an order of the court to enforce the rights being infringed upon by the respondent’s continued detention of Mr. Ogungbemi at the DSS detention facility “which is unreasonable, illegal, unconstitutional, null and void”.

The NUJ also demanded N5 million only as compensation for his unlawful arrest and detention and asked for further order(s) the court might consider just and appropriate to make for the redress of the infringement of his rights.

The reliefs, according to the counsel, are based on three grounds including that the applicant had no criminal records and that his arrest and continued detention over the publication was unreasonable, illegal and unconstitutional.

He also held that there was a competent court of jurisdiction within 16-kilometer radius from the detention facility of the respondent wherein the applicant was detained but the respondent refused or neglected to charge him to court within the constitutional period.

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the motion was supported by a seven-paragraph affidavit deposed to by one T. S. Luka Esq. of J.U. Usman and Co. law firm, Lokoja.

In the written address in support of the applicant’s motion on notice, the counsel raised two issues for determination.

They include whether the arrest and continued detention of the applicant was not a violation of his rights to personal liberty, freedom of movement and fair hearing and whether the applicant was not entitled to the compensation claimed therein.

(NAN)


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  • CEO

    So the SSS is subject to court orders and injunctions? Are we currently living in a democratic society where the rule of law and constitutional provisions are sacrosanct? If Ibrahim Magu of EFCC can order the arrest and detention of a journalist, for daring to expose the unhealthy work environment in that agency, why can’t Daura, Buhari’s own nephew do worse. Who knows, maybe that journalist has been under surveillance for corrupt practices, and this is the time to lock him up pending further investigations at a time only the SSS can set. Can anyone stop Daura? Time will tell.

    • Burbank

      And those Guantanamo detainees were convicted by a US court before they were detained for a decade.

      • CEO

        I like your other name and previous emails to me in that name better.

        • Burbank

          No correspondence address to biafra

  • azu ralph

    Don”t worry NUL. After the justices” STING and a judge ruling that masquerades can APPEAR in our courts, what do you espect ? Soon the cookie will descend down to roost. Remember the saying; they came for the communist the neighbour said they are not after him, went after jews, others not me. When finally they came for him, NOBODY left to speak for him.

  • thusspokez

    Mr. Ogungbemi, a Lokoja-based journalist and publisher, was arrested and detained by the SSS, also called DSS, on November 30 over alleged offensive publication in the November 23 – December 15, 2016 edition of the Policy and Lawmakers magazine.

    #DissovleNgrSSS. It is high time, the SSS was dissolved.

    • Burbank

      It’s high time the SSS is given more enforcement powers.

  • evidence

    First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out
    Because I was not a Socialist.

    Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out
    Because I was not a Trade Unionist.

    Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out
    Because I was not a Jew.

    Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.

    • Burbank

      If Martin Niemoller is in Nigeria today, Buhari will make him the DSS DG.

  • Decimator

    State terror, State sponsored kidnappers, abuse of office , Tyranny and illiteracy all encompassed in a sadistic mindset, these are the least among all that suits a definition of the government of the day in the Nigerian enclave.

    Who still argues that the project Nigeria is what it?

    Ever becoming clearer that there is no Nation called Nigeria. Those who keep ignoring the warning signs will wake up one day to become citizens of an un-existing country.

    • Burbank

      Like biafra ceased to exist.

  • Raji Bello

    Lazy Nigerian journalism; WHAT DID THE JOURNALIST WRITE??? This is the question that is begging for an answer in this story. The lazy reporter just busied himself with legal details while leaving this pertinent question unanswered.

  • princegab

    Where is the offensive article?

  • okene

    Pls , people should ask for the reason why the journalist is cooling of in DSS detention room..He is one of the gangs that are inventing NADECO stile of stinging and stabbing every government policy and programme in the state just for sentimental reason.They thought they can bring the government dawn.Never at once since the advent of this particular regime in Kogi State they write anythings that brings progress rather they are out to Poisson the mind of the people.

    They are heartless people. They are not after our children’s future. They thought the governor will call them and give them money. They use online Kogi Reporter for there propaganda after the arrest of the gay.

    • Decimator

      The core reason for the outrage is the way authorities of the day have transformed themselves to Alfa and Omega in a constitutional democracy. If anybody or the government felt that somebody is spreading falsehood against him or her, he or she has every right to seek redress in a court of justice. Like it or not these are the people who have the competence as a neutral body to look at each side of the coin and pass judgement. They cannot and should not be replaced with the DSS, SSS or the Military, which is principally a state organ, for the state side ofbthe story. How can anybody justify state sponsored arbitrary detentions most of the time not even with any clear case to support their claims, or shooting down in cold blood of youths or religious groups for a peaceful gathering or procession irrespective of their demands in a constitutional democracy. That is pure dictatorship and Tyranny and has nothing to look for in any democracy in the 21 century. Thanks.

      • Burbank

        “How can anybody justify state sponsored arbitrary detentions most of the time not even with any clear case to support their claims”

        And Guantanamo is run by North Korea.

      • Burbank

        “How can anybody justify state sponsored arbitrary detentions most of the time not even with any clear case to support their claims”

        And Guantanamo is run by North Koreans

        • Serious

          My dear you are really working hard for your pay. I strongly recommend you to your pay masters.

          • Burbank

            It’s called Nigeria

          • Serious

            No! Sai Babarian. But have others deserted you?
            Keep working hard Boy

          • Burbank

            Like Ojukwu deserted biafrans for Ivory Coast