The two observers, Chinedu Nwagu of Cleen Foundation and Scot Igbene of EIE Nigeria, who were arrested in the morning by some soldiers deployed to Edo State, have been released.
The observers, who were arrested at Irrhua, in Edo State, confirmed to PREMIUM TIMES that they were let go almost immediately after the soldiers apprehended them.
According to Chinedu Nwagu, the soldiers arrested them because “they said there was a curfew and we were disobeying it”.
But both observers are fully accredited to monitor the elections regardless of the curfew. On the list of accredited observer community, Cleen Foundation is number one out of the 22 organisations accredited to monitor the elections.
The soldiers allegedly tried to intimidate the observers; they were asked to enter into the soldiers patrol van and then afterwards, were asked to drive in front of them.
The soldiers also threatened to slap the observers.
It is not clear why the soldiers had a change of mind and let the observers go a few minutes later.
Alerts of their arrest hit the social media tool –Twitter, and concerns were raised about their safety.