- The Plateau state chapter of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) accuses the Army of indiscriminate arrests over missing Major General Idris Alkali (rtd)
- The NUJ says says instead of using its intelligence, the Army is arresting anybody in sight
- The union threatens to withdraw its members from covering the activities of the Army if the alleged intimidation continues
The Plateau state chapter of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), on Monday, October 8, accused the country’s army of indiscriminate arrests, intimidation and harassment of residents in its search for the missing Major General Idris Alkali (rtd).
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the council, in a statement signed by its secretary, Peter Amine, said that the attitude was becoming a source of worry to the NUJ.
“We expect the Army to use its intelligence findings and go after those they suspect to have a hand in the matter. Unfortunately, they are arresting anybody on sight.
“We expect them to use the same intelligence they used to locate the car, to fish out the suspects in their search for General Alkali or his body.
“We are worried because innocent people are not spared by the `crude method’ they have employed. Needless to also add that the attitude has instilled fear in the people and is already overheating the polity,” the statement said.
The union recalled that the army, on Saturday, October 6, assured members of the public that they would exhibit high level of professionalism and adhere to international standards in the search.
“We were happy when we heard that commitment, but all the actions so far taken have contradicted that assurance,” the statement said.
The report added that the NUJ particularly recalled that the soldiers arrested a reporter with the Punch Newspaper, alongside other persons, in a restaurant in Jos, saying that those ‘captured’ were detained for 28 hours at the Army Barracks in Rukuba.
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“While journalists support the search for the missing officer, the NUJ in Plateau will not hesitate to withdraw its members from covering the activities of the Army if the intimidation and harassment continue,” the statement said.
NAIJ.com earlier reported that the Nigerian Army, on Saturday, October 6, appealed to the residents of Dura - Du district and its environs in the Jos south local government area of Plateau state not to flee their homes over a missing retired officer.
The headquarters of the 3 division of the Nigerian Army said it is aware of reports that the residents had fled and abandoned their homes and business premises to avoid being clamped down by the troops involved in the search and rescue operation for the missing retired senior officer.
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