Leave the media alone, Delta tells abductors of journalists.
Delta State government has condemned the recent abduction of 14 journalists who were returning from duty in the Escravos area of the state by heavily armed hoodlums.
According to the state, resorting to actions designed to give the impression that the journalist were armed, the militants only showed ingratitude to the fourth estate of the realm which was a reliable ally in the turbulent days of agitation for more equitable resource allocation.
The state called on those who took the journalists to tender unreserved apologies to the 14 journalists and the Nigeria Union of Journalist (NUJ)
The statement signed by the Commissioner for Information, Chike Ogeah reads:
“On Sunday, November 16, 2014, about 14 journalists returning from legitimate duties were forcefully abducted in the Escravos area by armed men believed to be aligned to an ex-militant leader. We unreservedly condemn this action as it is not only mindless but cowardly and unwarranted.
“Journalists in Nigeria, especially those in Delta State, have consistently proved to be the beacon of peace, goodwill and reconciliation even in the face of increasing security challenges. By their professional disposition, media practitioners have consistently won the admiration and respect of all sections of the society.
“The administration of Dr. Emmanuel Uduaghan, Governor of Delta State, has been in the fore front of fighting for the development of state, including the oil producing areas. He was the brain behind the amnesty initiative adopted by the Federal Government that eventually brought peace to the Niger Delta region.
“We urge any group or persons with any grievance to tread the path peace and dialogue as they remain the only enduring platform for genuine reconciliation. We also enjoin all stakeholders to cooperate with Governor Uduaghan as he assiduously seeks reconciliation and development in Delta State.
“As unbiased purveyors of information, the press requires respect and protection from all interest groups.
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