Nigerian military threatens journalist for not revealing sources – CPJ
Abuja, Nigeria, August 18, 2016 — The Nigerian military should cease threatening freelance journalist Ahmad Salkida with prosecution for not acting as an informer, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. The military has said the journalist could face terrorism charges if he does not provide it with information he gained in the course of his reporting on the militant group Boko Haram.
In a statement carried by Nigerian news websites on August 14, military spokesman Col. Sani Kukasheka Usman declared Salkida and two civil-society workers – Aisha Wakil and Ahmed Bolori – “wanted for interrogation” regarding the location of over two hundred school girls Boko Haram abducted in April 2014. In the statement, Col. Usman invoked the 2011 Terrorism Prevention Act, under which “Nigerians could be punished for failure to disclose information about terrorists or terrorists’ activities.” He said, “We are also liaising with other security agencies for their arrest if they [fail] to turn up.” Salkida has lived in the United Arab Emirates since August 2013.
“Journalists must sometimes rely on the trust of dangerous people. Coercing them to become informants risks putting all journalists under suspicion and in danger,” CPJ West Africa Representative Peter Nkanga said. “Nigeria’s military should not threaten Ahmad Salkida and instead ensure that he is free to work.”