The International Press Centre (IPC) has raised the need for security agencies to enlighten their operatives on the importance of according respect to journalists covering events of public interest.
The group raised the concerns on Thursday in a press statement by its Press Freedom Officer, Melody Lawal.
The IPC, while kicking against the trend of constant assault of journalists in the line of duty, condemned the shooting of the Osun State Correspondent of The Nation newspaper, Toba Adedeji, by the police.
Toba Adedeji, a journalist with the Nation Newspaper, was days ago, shot by the police while covering a protest over alleged police brutality in Osogbo, Osun State.
The attacks, according to IPC, represent a return to the regime of repression of journalists and other media professionals in the country.
The IPC said the continued target of journalists by security agents, constitutes a grave danger to press freedom and freedom of expression.
“We condemn the attacks and demand the apprehension and trial of the alleged perpetrators so that justice can be served”.
”Political parties need to be reminded that the Nigerian Media Code of Election Coverage requires them to grant access to journalists interested in covering their activities including primaries while taking measures to protect them from aggrieved party members or political thugs”.
Other attacks recently carried out against journalists according to the IPC include, ”the harassment and beating of Yinka Adeniran, the Oyo State Correspondent of The Nation newspaper by the Police while he was covering the Peoples Democratic Party gubernatorial primary at Lekan Salami Sports Complex, Adamasingba, Ibadan on May 25, 2022.
”The attack by suspected political thugs on the vehicle conveying members of the Correspondents Chapel of the Osun State Council of NUJ on May 24th, 2022 while covering the campaign by the State Governor in Gbogan in Aiyedaade Local Government Area.
”And the arrest of three journalists – Deborah Coker of News Agency of Nigeria, Sunny Inarumen of African Independent Television and Osamuyi Ogbomo, a cameraman with the Independent Television on May 24, 2022, in Benin, Edo State Capital, while covering a factional primary of the Peoples Democratic Party”.
Address trend of officers harassing journalists – IPC to security agencies