The increasing incidents of attack on Press Freedom in Nigeria has become a major source of concern to a coalition of 14 Civil Society Organisations (CSOs).
The coalition on Thursday in Abuja met in Abuja to make their displeasure at this development known.
Convener of the group, Civil Society Concerns, Mr Auwal Rafsanjani, who spoke for the coalition during a news conference where he said the press was being denied freedom as observed in the recent arrest and detention of journalists.
He decried the arrest and detention without trial of journalists for performing their legitimate duties.
[penci_blockquote style=”style-2″ align=”none” author=””]“We call on the Presidency to call security agencies to order and put a definite end to constitutional breaches and violations of human rights by security agencies that have been acting with impunity.[/penci_blockquote]
His words: “As civil society activists, we are concerned with the rising cases of attack on press freedom as observed in the recent arrest and detention of journalists.
“This undermines the cardinal principle of press freedom in a democratic system of government.
“We call on the Presidency to call security agencies to order and put a definite end to constitutional breaches and violations of human rights by security agencies that have been acting with impunity.
“Our greatest concern is also the continuous emasculation, harassment and intimidation of the institutions of the legislature by the security agencies.’’
The convener commended the Vice President for taking prompt action to restore sanity and constitutional order by curbing the excesses of personnel of Department of State Security (DSS).
[penci_related_posts taxonomies=”undefined” title=”Online Related Posts” background=”” border=”” thumbright=”no” number=”4″ style=”grid” align=”none” displayby=”recent_posts” orderby=”random”]
He described the recent invasion of the National Assembly by the Department of State Service (DSS) as an affront on civil rules, saying the agency had engaged in the abuse of power in relation to the key democratic institution.
Rafsanjani also bemoaned the absence of the board of the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) which he said, made it difficult for the commission to perform its functions effectively.
He made allusion to the activities of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SAR) as wanton violation of citizens’ rights which he also said, had become an issue of public concern and agitation.