Human rights activist, Femi Falana (SAN) has described the democratic governments of former navy generals, Olusegun Obasanjo and Muhammadu Buhari as repressive.
Falana stated the repressive model of rule by the navy continued to manifest throughout the governments of Buhari and former President Obasanjo.
He defined that the federal government has remained within the arms of former navy bosses and their beneficiaries who’ve been recycling themselves in energy for the reason that finish of navy rule in Nigeria.
He additionally recognized navy rule as the key setback battling the event of West Africa, including that it’s the biggest enemy of press freedom in Africa as journalists had been unlawfully held and handled throughout the navy rule.
The senior lawyer disclosed this on Friday, in his handle throughout the West Africa Media Excellence Convention and Awards (WAMECA) held in Ghana.
The lawyer spoke on ‘Journalism In Africa: Its Troopers and Protectors, its Enemies and Executioners.’
He stated, “Nigeria didn’t develop into a degenerate state till January 15, 1966, when the navy overthrew the elected authorities of Tafawa-Balewa. The cumulative 29 years the navy dominated Nigeria are primarily liable for the quagmire the nation is in at the moment.
“At the moment, the Nigerian coup-generals and their beneficiaries proceed to recycle themselves in energy. Within the final 22 years of post-military rule, former navy rulers, Olusegun Obasanjo and Muhammadu Buhari have been President for fourteen years throughout which they’ve continued the navy tradition of repression.”
Whereas commending the investigations accomplished by journalists whereby some unscrupulous dealings by main leaders internationally had been uncovered within the Pandora Papers, Falana famous that the collaboration between the journalists on the planet displayed the ability of the media, professionalism and dedication to creating the world a greater place.
“They leaked 11.9 million paperwork and a couple of.9 terabytes of information exposing corrupt dealings by the highly effective and the worldwide wealthy. The Pandora Papers which had been launched on October 3, 2021, uncovered the key dealings of 35 world leaders and over 100 billionaires and highly effective individuals.
“In 600 journalists from 150 media organisations, throughout 117 nations working collectively, reveals not simply the ability of organisation, professionalism and dedication to make the world a greater place, but in addition, the unstoppable energy of the press,” he stated.
Falana additionally recommended Ghana for being accommodating to fleeing journalists looking for asylum from repressive governments in Nigeria.
He stated, “Let me thank Ghana for offering refuge for Nigerian journalists fleeing persecution. When the Abacha regime in Nigeria determined to bodily eradicate Mr (Dapo) Olorunyomi in 1995, it was to Ghana he fled for refuge. When his spouse, Ladi who had been held hostage was launched on bail, it was Ghana that welcomed her and the youngsters.
“Additionally as you may know, when Nigerian employers had been unwilling to rent Nnamdi Azikiwe, one of many biggest journalists that ever practised in West Africa, it was Ghanaian employer, Mr A.J. Ocansey who in 1934 gave him a job to determine and run a fearless, Pan Africanist newspaper, the AFRICAN MORNING POST on this metropolis. Azikiwe later moved again to Nigeria organising among the finest and most fearless newspaper chains, the WEST AFRICAN PILOT.”
Talking on the worth paid by journalists internationally, Falana famous, “The Committee for the Safety of Journalists (CPJ) says that between 1992 and 2021, a complete of 1,418 journalists had been killed within the line of responsibility. That’s some 50 journalists killed yearly! This can be a very excessive worth to pay and humanity owes journalists everlasting gratitude for being watchdogs for society, checking corruption, criminality and energy abuse.
“In West Africa, journalists have confronted repression and demise. This consists of the October 19, 1986 mutilation of Mr Dele Giwa, the Editor-in-Chief of the Nigerian NEWSWATCH Journal by means of a parcel bomb, and, the 1995 sentencing of 4 Nigerian journalists, Mrs Chris Anyanwu, Kunle Ajibade, George Mbah and Ben Charles-Obi to life imprisonment for reporting an tried coup. There was the December 13, 1998, mafia-style execution and incineration of investigative Burkinabe journalist, Norbet Zongo, his brother, chauffeur and a good friend.
“The development within the area as manifested within the nations talked about and people like Ghana, present that maybe the best enemies of press freedom is the navy rule.”
Noting that abuse of the media by leaders shouldn’t be restricted to Africa, Falana stated, “No different world chief in up to date instances has abused this greater than former America President Donald Trump who in holding misinformation in a vile grip, instructed 30,573 verifiable lies in his 4 years on the White Home; a median of 21 lies or inaccurate statements for day by day he was in workplace.
“Let me state that this isn’t uniquely American. Wartime British Prime Minister, Winston Churchill propagated that: ‘In wartime, fact is so treasured that she ought to at all times be attended by a bodyguard of lies.’ In different phrases, in instances of battle or assumed battle, one of many first casualties is the reality or info on which journalism constructed its follow.
“State actors, non-state actors and all species of human beings for numerous causes disseminate faux information or what’s elegantly clothed as various information. These are fed the citizenry, the harmless or the gullible.
“Misinformation or faux information is a hazard to journalism, however there could be no let-up within the wrestle in opposition to the purveyors who in lots of instances, is the state. In actual fact, many nations set up faux information websites or farms the place they plant, tradition and harvest faux information which they disseminate.”
“In conclusion is that as human beings, we owe it an obligation not simply to guard and defend journalists however to additionally be certain that the mass media within the face of digital improvement, altering know-how and dwindling assets, stay on target. That is within the curiosity of primary freedom, human rights, democracy and the event of humanity,” he added.
- ENTERTAINMENT18 hours ago
It’s a dangerous thing to build up a man of low integrity. It’s like sharpening the knife that will be used to stab you – Angela Okorie
- ENTERTAINMENT17 hours ago
Why I no longer talk with Ka3na – BBNaija’s Tochi reveals
- NEWS19 hours ago
Kwara govt seals residential building for practicing open defecation in Ilorin
- NEWS14 hours ago
We didn’t burn houses, shops in Imo community – IPOB/ESN
- ENTERTAINMENT16 hours ago
Singer Rema calls out DJ Neptune over his Intellectual Property
- ENTERTAINMENT17 hours ago
Moment BBN’s Whitemoney went off on fans asking after BBN’s Queen’s whereabouts on his IG live (video)
- NEWS13 hours ago
Don queries Akwa Ibom govt over Mexican cows budgeted for in 2017
- NEWS10 hours ago
Unity remains only means of sustaining Nigeria – Group