BY PRINCELY ONYENWE,IMO
There is a plan by Imo state newspaper vendors and circulation representatives to embark on strike from Tuesday morning to protest for their arbitrary arrest and brutalization by the Police team.
Our source told 9News Nigeria that the latest ongoing crackdown on press freedom in Imo state by the security agencies as witnessed in the arrest and brutalization of vendors in Owerri Monday morning and the earlier arrest of a yet-to-be found colleague in Orlu few days ago is condemnable and should give everyone some concern.
Meanwhile, Freedom of the press is guaranteed in our constitution and cannot be suppressed by any force. As far as Nigeria is concerned, the press has paid her dues towards nation building and unity.
The vendors however lamented the primitive method of attacking the press should be jettisoned immediately by our security agencies if they do not want to over heat the already heated polity and security in the land.
Abiding by the professional edict and ethics of work, the press cannot be cowed or intimidated from doing thier constitutional job.
There is a laid down procedure in seeking redress over any infraction by any media outfit or practitioner which must be followed by the security agencies instead of the obnoxious, archaic and crude method of gagging the press.
If there is one thing the government needs now to overcome the present security challenges in the country, it’s a free press.
This will go a long way in affording them with the relevant information needed to handle the situation. Gagging the press will be more harmful to them than good therefore.
We join other media houses to call on Imolites to brace up for this unfolding challenge and join the media in the state to resist this malady.
Suspectedly, there may be more to this than we see. We therefore support the resolve of the harassed vendors to embark on an indefinite strike from tomorrow Tuesday 11th May 2021 to protest their arbitrary arrest and brutalization by the Police today.
On the other hand, We want to use this medium to plead the state government to help in this matter while awakening the consciousness of Imolites to defend the freedom of the press in Imo state.
WE STAND FOR PRESS FREEDOM IN IMO STATE AND NIGERIA AT LARGE!!
9News Nigeria (Owerri)
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