Silverbird journalist and a member of the Oyo State Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), John Alabi has described his arrest as illegal and baseless.
Alabi, who stated this after his release to newsmen on Tuesday evening, said he was arrested at Moniya, an area of Akjnyele Local Government of Oyo State.
He explained that he was on a media assignment around the area, but while waiting to receive the arrival of the engager, he had a hint that there was a public disorder in the local government.
He added that while navigating the cause with a few shots, he was apprehended by five police officers, one of whom was Noah Ajebade and others on mufti who hit him severally with gun back and ferried off a nearby police station, despite showing his identity as a journalist.
The journalist condemned his illegal detention from around 10.45 in the morning to 4.30pm before release through the intervention of the leadership of the Nigerian Union of Journalists, Oyo State Chapter, led by Chief Ademola Babalola and a call received by the Akinyele Police DIvisional Police Officer having sat hours behind a complaint table at the Police Station.
“My ordeal during an incident that broke up on Tuesday, 25th April 2023 at Moniya, Ibadan.
“Uhmmmm…I was at Akinyele Local Government Area in the morning on the said date, where I had a scheduled assignment to cover for my organization.
“As a journalist, I got to the venue ahead of the commencement of the assignment as expected, unfortunately, while waiting for the organizers, I got wind of information that there was a public disorder around the Akinyele local government”
Alabi has applauded the police commissioner, CP Williams Adebowale for always standing for truth, urging for true justice, and never being tortured baselessly.
“As expected of a professional journalist, I tried to know what the matter was and I was taking a few shots. Immediately I saw about five police officers who approached and Harrassed me, hitting me with gun bottom, despite calling their attention to the fact that I am a journalist”
“I showed them my identity as a journalist and other evidence that I’m a newsman, but they turned a deaf ear, arrested me, and detained me at Akinyele Folice from around 10:45 in the morning till 4:30 in the evening.
“It took the intervention of the Nigeria Union of Journalists, NUJ, Oyo State Council before I was released”, Alabi said.
Meanwhile, Oyo Commissioner of Police, William Adebowale in a statement released this evening by State Police Public Relations Officer, Mr. Adewale Osifeso has ordered a discreet investigation into the arrest of Oyo State Correspondent of Silverbird Television, John Alabi by his deputy, while details of the investigation be made public.