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News Editor, Segun Olatunji, freed from DIA custody

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News Editor, Segun Olatunji, freed from DIA custody

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Segun Olatunji, Editor of FirstNews, a prominent Lagos-based online news platform, has been released from custody after 12 days of abduction by gunmen suspected to be affiliated with the Defence Intelligence Agency (DIA).

Dr. Iyobosa Uwugiaren, Secretary-General of the Nigerian Guild of Editors (NGE), confirmed Olatunji’s freedom in a brief statement, disclosing that he was handed over to the Guild in Abuja by operatives of the security agency.

Olatunji’s ordeal began on March 15 when he was forcibly taken from his home in Iyana Odo, Abule Egba area of Lagos by about 10 armed assailants and transported to an undisclosed location.

His sudden disappearance sparked widespread concern among Nigerians and fellow journalists, who demanded answers regarding his whereabouts and the reasons behind his abduction.

After days of uncertainty, it was revealed that Olatunji had been apprehended by the DIA and held in their custody without public acknowledgment.

The Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) and the Nigerian National Committee of the International Press Institute (IPI Nigeria) took swift action, petitioning President Bola Tinubu to intervene and ensure Olatunji’s release or fair legal proceedings.

In response to mounting pressure, Minister of Information, Mohammed Idris, disclosed that the military had confirmed Olatunji’s detention, citing unspecified charges against him.

This revelation came shortly after the IPI’s petition, underscoring the urgency and gravity of the situation.

The NUJ vehemently condemned Olatunji’s abduction, denouncing it as a flagrant violation of press freedom and a sobering reminder of the risks faced by journalists in the line of duty on a daily basis.

Olatunji’s release brings relief to his family, colleagues, and the wider media community, yet the circumstances surrounding his detention underscore the challenges and threats confronting journalism in Nigeria.

As the nation grapples with issues of press freedom and the rule of law, Olatunji’s case serves as a stark reminder of the importance of safeguarding journalists’ rights and ensuring accountability within security agencies.