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Tordue Salem: NUJ Issues Police 24-Hour Mandate For Missing Journalist

Following the disappearance of an Abuja based journalist, Mr.Tordue Henry Salem, the Nigerian Union of Journalists FCT Council, has given the Nigerian Police, the Department of State Security (DSS) and other security agencies a 24-hour mandate to produce the journalist.

The mandate was handed down at a World Press Conference organised by the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Chapter, in conjunction with some Human Rights Organizations, including Human Rights Writers Association (HURIWA), Men Against Rape Foundation and others.

The FCT NUJ Chairman, Comrade Emmanuel Ogbeche said that the Council promptly informed the Police and other security agencies immediately the case of Salem was made known to the Council and that he has been following the matter up to today.

He lamented that the Police and other security agencies have so far, not done anything to unravel the whereabouts of the missing Vanguard newspaper reporter who covers the National Assembly.

Ogbeche stated that in this digital age, it takes little or no serious efforts to locate a missing person who has mobile telephone and other facilities easy to track.

“We challenge the security agencies to prove us otherwise.

If it were not so, as at this moment, they would have been able to tell us what efforts they have undertaken in locating the whereabouts of Mr. Salem.

We want to say that there will be consequences for Mr Salem’s disappearance,“ Comrade Ogbeche said.

He also said the onus is on the security agencies to produce Mr. Salem or prove to the Council and the Nigerian public that the journalist is not in their captivity.

The chairman also said that the issue of kidnapping has been ruled out as no one has made any contacts whatsoever.

On his part, the Chairman of Human Rights Organizations, including Human Rights Writers Association (HURIWA), Comrade Emmanuel Onwumbiko, said that the Civil Society Organisations have been raising alarms over frequent disappearance of citizens.

He cited similar cases where citizens have been reported missing, only to be produced by the Police after some months and in some cases, years, like in the case of Jones Abiri, a journalist who was detained by the Police for two years without the knowledge of his family and the public.

He called on the government to scrap underground cells in the country.

He said that the disappearance of the journalist in front of the force headquarters was shameful.

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