Buhari, Nigeria’s President-Elect Moves Against Press Freedom as Citizens React

by on April 28, 2015

By Yemi Adebowale

According to a Vanguard newspaper report on Monday, “Nigeria’s former military dictator and current President-elect, General Mohammadu Buhari may have just started a revenge mission on the African Independent Television, AIT when, Monday, the security men attached to him barred the station’s correspondent, Bebei from covering Buhari’s functions.”

“The directive was given to the correspondent by an official at the Defence House where the crew had gone to cover the visit of Cuban ambassador to Buhari. The Defence House is a residential facility owned by the Nigerian government”, The Vanguard reported on Monday.

Nigerians from all walks of life have been reacting to the move which many say appears to be Buhari’s first move against press freedom in Nigeria and a sign of how intolerant his government will be towards critics of his administration. Buhari, it will be recalled clamped down on the media and jailed journalists under his infamous Decree 4 while he was Nigeria’s military Head of State between 1984 and 1985.

Buhari in an interview with BBC HardTalk in 2004 is seen defending the need to proscribe free press if their reporting would amount to embarrassing public officials.

Nigerians across the social media have been condemning what many citizens have described as a brazenly undemocratic move.

Meanwhile, in a hasty move of damage control on Tuesday, Buhari’s All Progressives Congress (APC) party issued a statement to reverse the ban.

READ: APC ‘Clears’ African Independent Television To Cover Buhari’s Activities

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