Amnesty International, a global human rights organisation, has said the rearrest of pro-democracy activist and journalist, Omoyele Sowore, by operatives of the Department of State Services at the Federal High Court in Abuja on Friday less than 24 hours after he was released on bail, came as a rude shock to them.
Country Director of AI, Osai Ojigho, on Monday said they were worried about various human rights violations in Nigeria, particularly as regards the harassment of journalists.
She said, “Increasingly, we have been seeing very worrying and troubling traits with regards to freedom of expression in Nigeria.
“We are shocked by the arrest of Sowore and Bakare again despite the fact that they have been released by a valid court order and the continuous harassment of Agba Jalingo and detention, despite the fact that he is being charged with trumped-up charges.
“This raises serious concerns for us as an organisation and as a country. The authority cannot pick which laws to obey and which ones not to.
“The social media bill, the hate speech and the reintroduction of the NGO bill in different forms in the name of regulation is an attempt to repress free speech and freedom of expression.
“Repression of journalists is a threat to all of us because journalists carry stories which otherwise we will not be able to hear.
“Once this right is eroded, all other rights will also be at risk.”