FG not responsible for the arrest of Premium Times reporters

Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed yesterday, stated that the Federal Government has nothing to do with the arrest of Mr. Dapo Olorunyomi, Publisher of online newspaper, Premium Times, and a reporter working for the paper, Ms. Evelyn Okakwu.

In a communiqué, the minister promised that Federal Government will not do anything to surpress press freedom, because it is keenly aware that a free press is important to the success of any democracy.

He said the whole issue of the journalists’ arrest is purely a private affair involving a citizen and a privately-owned newspaper, and wondered how that could now be construed as an attempt by the government to intimidate the press.

He said, ”We have said it before and we want to re-state it: The Federal Government has no immediate or long-term plan to stifle press freedom.

“Even the social media, with its warts and all, will neither be regulated nor have its operations tampered with.”