Dec 23, 2011 – How Police Arrest Fleeing Journalist’s Wife, Kid, Uncle
Benue Police Command has raided the house of a Makurdi-based journalist, Mr. Henry Ibya, taking away his wife, child and 60-year old uncle over a story on Governor Gabriel Suswam’s wife.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that an item entitled: “How Gov. Suswam’s wife duped Benue of N100 million,” was published in Wednesday’s edition of the ‘Western Premier’ newspaper.
The story chronicled how the governor’s wife allegedly misappropriated the sum of N100 million meant for the celebration of an occasion tagged “Celebrating the Benue woman.”
NAN learnt that the publication set the journalist on a collision path with the government which ordered his arrest and prosecution.
Family sources told NAN that Ibya’s house was raided at about 9 p.m. on Wednesday while he had yet to return.
They said the police came in two vehicles and whisked away the family members.
A cross-section of journalists in Makurdi expressed dismay at the arrest of their colleague’s wife, saying that it was wrong to visit the sins of a person on another.
They said that the action was capable of severing the relationship between the police and the media in the state.
The police, however, denied detaining the journalist’s wife, child and elderly uncle.
They explained that the woman was invited for questioning but was never put in the cell.
Mr. Anthony Njoku, the Assistant Commissioner of Police (CID), told journalists that the police only invited the woman for questioning and never detained her.
Njoku said the woman had been released together with the child and uncle.
He, however, appealed to journalists to prevail on the fleeing journalist to report himself to the police to answer charges of publishing a vexatious item about the governor’s wife.
Ibya had earlier written a story on the governor’s Special Adviser on Media, Dr. Cletus Akwaya, entitled: “Sex rocks Suswam’s administration,” which also pitted him against the government. not allowed.