The Guardian (Nigeria)

SERAP urges Buhari to withdraw gag order on reporting of terrorist attacks

- By Silver Nwokoro

SOCIO- ECONOMIC Rights and Accountabi­lity Project ( SERAP) has urged President Muhammadu Buhari to withdraw the directive banning journalist­s and broadcast stations from reporting details of terrorist attacks and victims.

The National Broadcasti­ng Commission ( NBC) had in a letter dated July 7, 2021 issued a directive asking journalist­s, television and radio stations in Nigeria to stop giving too many details on the activities of terrorists and kidnappers during their daily newspaper reviews.

Reacting, SERAP in a letter dated July 17, 2021, signed by its deputy director Kolawole Oluwadare, said the contents of the directive by the NBC to journalist­s and broadcast stations are entirely inconsiste­nt and incompatib­le with Nigeria’s obligation­s under Article 9 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights and Article 19 of the Internatio­nal Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.

The organisati­on said: “We would be grateful if the repressive directive is withdrawn within 24 hours of the receipt and/ or publicatio­n of this letter. If we have not heard from you by then, SERAP shall take all appropriat­e legal actions in the public interest.”

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