Reporters Without Borders hails the release of two journalists who had been arrested by the Kano state police in connection with reports about Kano’s governor. They were both freed on the evening of 3 July.
Tukur Mamu, the editor of the Kaduna-based Desert Herald weekly, was arrested on 2 July and was immediately taken to the headquarters of the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) in the federal capital, Abuja. Alhaji Ado Mohamed of Kano-basedFreedom Radio was arrested on 26 June.
03.07.09 – Journalist arrested by Kano state police and taken to Abuja
Reporters Without Borders condemns the arrest of Tukur Mamu, the editor of the Desert Herald weekly, late yesterday afternoon in Kaduna by police from the northern state of Kano, who immediately took him to the headquarters of the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) in the federal capital, Abuja.
“We are extremely worried about Tukur Mamu and we demand his immediate release and an end to the threats being made against him,” Reporters Without Borders said. “The Kano state authorities seem to be bent on persecuting him.”
Several sources separately reported that Mamu’s arrest was ordered by Kano state governor Mallam Ibrahim Shekarau, who nonetheless denied this at a news conference today.
Tukur Mamu’s lawyer, Idriss Mamu, went to CID headquarters in Abuja today to enquire after his client, who had been in hiding for the past week after getting phone calls warning that Kano’s governor would “personally take care of you” if he continued to publish articles that “harm the government’s interests.”
The warnings came after he ran a story about the fatal shooting of Sheikh Ja’afar Mahmoud Adam, a teacher in Koranic studies, in April 2007 in Dorayi. The governor could possibly be involved in this murder.
Alhaji Ado Mohamed, the executive vice-chairman of Kano-basedFreedom Radio was arrested by nine policemen on 26 June after writing about the same murder for the Saharareporters website. Idriss Mamu told Reporters Without Borders that Mohamed has just been hospitalised from the effects of a week in detention on his health.
Reporters Without Borders cited the cases of Tukur Mamu and Alhaji Ado Mohamed in a 1 July letter to President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua about the threats to journalists in Nigeria.
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