How Obanikoro Lost In Court Against Premium Times, SaharaReporters.

A former junior minister of Defence, Musiliu Obanikoro, on Friday lost out in a defamation suit he filed against PREMIUM TIMES and Sahara Reporters.

Justice Oluwatoyin Ipaye of the Ikeja Division of the Lagos High Court ordered Mr. Obanikoro to settle the matter against the media organizations at the Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) within seven days.

“This is a case of defamation and the parties involved should settle at the ADR within seven days and give this court a progress report on the next adjourned date,” said Mrs. Ipaye.

The judge adjourned the matter to April 7.

Mr. Obanikoro had sued the two news organizations, as well as Punch newspapers; Omoyele Sowore, publisher of Sahara Reporters; and Festus Owete, General Editor at PREMIUM TIMES, for their reports implicating him in the Ekiti State governorship election rigging scandal.

The former minister claimed that the defendants had published defamatory articles that caused him “political and personal losses” and sought damages amounting to N1 billion.

In his suit, Mr. Obanikoro sought an order of perpetual injunction restraining the defendants from publishing defamatory, damaging, offensive, or degrading statements against him.

He further sought an order of the court compelling the media houses to retract all the damaging articles against him by publishing an apology in their respective media.

He also filed a similar suit against Sahara Reporters in New York where the company’s headquarters is located, accusing the medium of harming his reputation in Nigeria and the United States.

Two weeks ago, the Supreme Court of the state of New York dismissed the defamation suit, directing that the matter be resolved in a Nigerian court.

Last year, Mrs. Ipaye delivered a ruling describing the former minister’s application in his suit at the Lagos High Court as lacking in merit.

“There is nothing before the court that shows the applicant will suffer more harm if the injunction is not granted,” Mrs. Ipaye said in April 2016.

“It is an error to seek to restrain a publisher of an article on the grounds of libel if there is no proof before the court that such material is libelous.

“I am persuaded that this application has no merit and an injunction is not appropriate in the circumstance.”


Source Sahara Reporters

Court gives Obanikoro 7 days to settle defamation suit against Premium Times, Sahara Reporters

A Lagos High Court has ordered Musiliu Obanikoro, a former junior minister of defence, to settle before the Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR), within seven days, a defamation suit he filed against PREMIUM TIMES and Sahara Reporters.

The judge said Mr. Obanikoro should give a progress report on the suit on April 7, the next adjourned date.

The former minister had instituted defamation charges against the two media companies for their reports implicating him in the Ekiti State governorship election rigging scandal.

Details later….

Omoyele Sowore Celebrates His 46th Birthday In Front Of Police Station [Pictures]

Sahara Reporters publisher Omoyele Sowore celebrated his 46th birthday yesterday.

However, the most interesting twist to the celebration is that Sowore’s invitation to the State Criminal Investigation Department (SCID) yesterday coincided with his birthday.

Sowore had been invited to the SCID for an ‘interview’ which was later aborted as the Police Station reportedly lost one of it’s officers.

However, Sowore’s supporters decided to celebrate his birthday right in front of the police station. The police had no alternative but to cope with all the revolutionary singing that followed. Some of the police officers looked considerably embarrassed as Sowore and his throng of supporters celebrated away.

See Pictures Below:







Police abort interview session with Sahara Reporters publisher after death of officer

The interview, which the police had scheduled to hold with the publisher of Sahara Reporters, Omoyele Sowore, yesterday could not hold afterwards.

This followed police cancellation of the meeting due to the death of one of their officers. According to the police: “The officers that were scheduled to interview Sowore were not on ground because the police lost one of its officers.”

Sowore, publisher of an online media, has had a running battle with the police since January, leading to his arrest and subsequent release at the State Criminal Investigation Department (SCID), Yaba, Lagos.

Adegboruwa said: “I have very strong reasons to believe that he is currently being persecuted on account of his media activities. Such persecution should not be allowed in a democratic government.

“Section 39 of the 1999 Constitution grants the right to freedom of expression and the press to every citizen of Nigeria. Section 22 places a great obligation on the media to hold government accountable to the people.

“This is what Sowore has been practicing through the Sahara Reporters’ medium. Although I may not agree with all that the medium represents, I have no doubt in my mind that Sowore has impacted meaningfully on Nigerians.”

Stop harassing SaharaReporters publisher, Joe Igbokwe tells police.

The spokesperson of the All Progressives Congress, APC, in Lagos State, Joe Igbokwe, has asked the Nigerian police to stop further harassment of the publisher of SaharaReporters, Omoyele Sowore.

Mr. Sowore has been to the police station in Lagos twice after he was reportedly assaulted on January 9 by one Lekan Fatodu over a report by the newspaper detailing how Mr. Fatodu was allegedly used as a front by former Aviation Minister, Femi Fani-Kayode, to corner public funds.

Mr Fani-Kayode, who is being prosecuted for corruption, has denied any wrongdoing and accused the anti-graft agency of witch-hunt.

There was a twist in the case when the police instead of investigating the reported assault on Mr. Sowore, became more interested in the allegation of criminal defamation made by Mr. Fatodu against the SaharaReporters publisher.

Mr. Sowore has been invited again for a meeting on Thursday with the Deputy Commissioner of Police in charge of the State Criminal Investigations Department, SCID, in the state.

The police did not disclose the purpose of the meeting.

Mr. Sowore, who received the police invitation on Monday through a text message sent to him, said he would honour the invitation which falls on his birthday.

Meanwhile, the APC spokesperson in Lagos, Mr. Igbokwe, thinks it would be better for the police to leave the publisher alone.

“I am begging the Nigeria police to allow Sowore to be,” Mr. Igbokwe said in a Facebook post on Tuesday.

“This guy is a professional protester, a diehard activist and an international advocate of the people’s cause”.

PREMIUM TIMES spoke with Mr. Igbokwe who confirmed his authorship of the Facebook post.

Mr. Igbokwe in the Facebook post extolled Mr. Sowore’s tenacity to fight for whatever he believes in, and described the publisher as being “a rare gift to Nigeria at a time like this”.

“All the money in the world cannot be used to buy this man. Let us celebrate this brave man, instead of harassing him.”

Nigeria Police invite SaharaReporters Publisher, Sowore, again.

The Nigeria police on Monday again invited the publisher of SaharaReporters, Omoyele Sowore, to a meeting on Thursday with the Deputy Commissioner of Police in charge of the State Criminal Investigations Department(SCID) in Lagos.

The invitation, which came in the form of a text message, did not disclose the purpose of the meeting. It merely invited Mr. Sowore and his colleagues to meet with the police authorities for an interview at 10a.m at the SCID headquarters in the Yaba area of Lagos.

Mr. Sowore was on January 9 physically assaulted in Lagos by one Lekan Fatodu over a report by SaharaReporters detailing how Mr. Fatodu was allegedly used as a front by former Aviation Minister Femi Fani-Kayode to corner public funds through the office of the National Security Adviser, Sambo Dasuki.

When Mr. Sowore was brought before Fatai Owoseni, the Commissioner of Police in Lagos, the police claimed a petition alleging criminal libel had been submitted by Mr. Fatodu against Mr. Sowore.

The following day when Mr. Sowore arrived at the SCID, the police were more interested in “mediation”, asking Mr. Sowore to meet Mr. Fatodu to resolve their differences.

Mr. Sowore refused, saying the police had been dishonest in the handling of the case.

His attorney, Femi Falana, on January 12 issued a statement saying the allegations of threat to life, criminal libel and extortion stated in Mr. Fatodu’s petition were false.

A few days after Mr. Sowore’s release, a strange dimension to the matter arose when a lawyer, Ugochukwu Osuagwu, issued a statement claiming that Mr. Sowore had been barred from leaving Nigeria over Mr. Fatodu’s petition.

Mr. Osuagwu is the same lawyer who, in January, addressed a petition to the police on behalf of the Chief of Army Staff, Yusuf Buratai, which led to the arrest of two Premium Times journalists a few days after Mr. Sowore was attacked and arrested in Lagos.

The continued police harassment of Mr. Sowore and other journalists has attracted condemnation by press freedom bodies across the globe.

Mr. Sowore told our reporters he plans to honour the invitation of the police on Thursday, an event which coincides with his birthday.

JUST IN: Court dismisses Obanikoro’s case against Sahara Reporters

The Supreme Court of the state of New York has dismissed a defamation lawsuit filed by a former Minister of State for Defence, Musiliu Obanikoro, against SaharaReporters and its publisher, Omoyele Sowore.

Mr. Obanikoro, a former senator, and former Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, alleged that Mr. Sowore and his media group committed libel by implicating him in the Ekiti State election rigging scandal and by allegedly reporting that he “killed many people in Lagos.”

The former minister argued in court that the reporting by Mr. Sowore and his website harmed his reputation in both Nigeria and the United States.

The former senator sued Mr. Sowore in New York, where the headquarters of SaharaReporters is located.

Mr. Sowore’s counsel, Robert Balin, moved for dismissal of the case on the grounds of non conveniens, meaning that another court – in this instance, a Nigerian court – would be better suited than the one in New York to hear the case.

The defendant argued that since the alleged offences were committed in Nigeria, a Nigerian court should ideally hear the case.

Mr. Sowore’s lawyers also argued that all the pertinent documents and witnesses are in Nigeria, not New York.

Justice Debra James subsequently granted the defendant’s motion to dismiss the case, saying the matter should be resolved in a Nigerian court.

The judge ruled that the case being ”highly political in nature, the Nigerian government has a compelling interest in resolving this matter through its judicial process.”

“Accordingly, it is ordered that the motion to dismiss this complaint on the ground that New York is an inconvenient forum is granted and the complaint is dismissed with costs and disbursements to defendants upon submission of an appropriate bill of costs,” the judge said in her ruling.

Who wants Omoyele Sowore dead? – By Malik Abdulganiy

When news broke on Wednesday that Omoyele Sowore, publisher of the anti-corruption website, Sahara Reporters, had been arrested in Lagos, not a few powerful men and women in Nigeria jumped for joy. Finally, their nemesis had been “captured” and would now face the law — having been accused of blackmail and threat to life by Lekan Fatodu, a PR consultant who said he had been friends with Sowore for years.

In an interview with TheCable, Fatodu alleged, among other things, that Sowore demanded a N100 million bribe from him — which many would immediately consider strange because there are politicians and business moguls who would gladly give that to the publisher without his asking. Sahara Reporters, also known as SR, gives sleepless nights to powerful Nigerians and Sowore is never short of “suitors”. If he had yielded once, the scandal would have been all over the news.

He has survived publishing anti-corruption stories for over a decade without his name showing up in any bribery or extortion scam, which makes this running episode a bit curious. Those who tried to induce Sowore in the past have always complained about meeting a brick wall — so why would he demand money from someone who is supposed to be a friend? Several questions are being asked as the saga unfolds and several theories are emerging in the process.

The Story in a Nutshell

On Wednesday afternoon, social media was sent into a frenzy with the story that Sowore had been arrested by the police in Ikeja, Lagos, and then transferred to state CID, Panti. Fatodu accused Sowore of defaming him as well as threatening his life. According to Fatodu, SR did a story in January 2016 on the $2.1 billion arms funds scandal in the NSA office listing him as laundering money for Femi Fani-Kayode, spokesman of the PDP presidential campaign in 2015.

Fatodu said he was distressed by the story, which damaged his reputation — but he appeared before the probe panel and was not found to have done anything wrong in executing the contract awarded to him by the office of the NSA. Fatodu said SR ran the story maligning him because he refused to snitch on Fani-Kayode whom he had done business with.

Sowore’s version is different. The SR publisher said when he got the story in question and it was alleged that Fatodu received funds through a lady friend of Fani-Kayode, he got in touch with Fatodu, who promised to provide more information on Fani-Kayode if his own name would be left out of the story. Sowore said he refused to agree and went ahead with his own story.

That marked the end of the friendship.

Hand of Esau?

Recounting his experience on the reported arrest, Sowore wrote: “I was physically attacked today by a gang led by Lekan Fatodu… he assaulted me before police officers at Area “F” in Ikeja in Lagos. After the police intervened soon as I was attacked by Lekan Fatodu and his friends in Lagos, we were taken to the CP’s office in Lagos.

“Turns out he was in on this, he pulled out a supposed petition written by Lekan from his hat after that he became very hostile towards me and ordered that we be driven to State CID, at Panti in Lagos. It is very obvious that this was planned between Lekan Fatodu and the police. They offered him unbridled support as he continued attacking me.”

Sowore said if indeed he threatened the life of Fatodu, “why was he the one trailing me to track me down and assault me? Who threatened whose life in this instance? He was obviously trailing me for days before finally attacking me”.

He insisted that he was not arrested, at least going by the initial account by the police themselves.

Dolapo Badmos, spokeswoman of the Lagos police command, had said: “Today, 11/1/2017 at about  15:39hrs, a distress call was received by the Lagos State Police Command that Mr Omoyele Sowore – Publisher of Sahara Reporters was being attacked by suspected hoodlums around Isaac John street, GRA, Ikeja.

“The police swiftly responded, and upon arrival at the scene contrary to the report that a robbery attack was taking place, the police met  the duo of Mr Omoyele Sowore and Mr Lekan Fatodu engaged in a brawl/altercation.

“With a view to ascertaining what led to the false alarm of a robbery, both parties were taken before the commissioner of police.”

On getting to his office of Fatai Owoseni, the CP, pulled out a petition written by Fatodu, which made Sowore believe it was all pre-planned. As far as the publisher and activist is concerned, Fatodu was just acting a script, especially the way Owoseni got involved and brought out a petition “from nowhere”.

Proxy War?

There are various theories to what is unfolding. One is that Fatodu is only fronting for a number of powerful Nigerians who have an ax to grind with Sowore. That some senators and governors reportedly “celebrated” the arrest would tend to support this theory. SR has been churning out details of how the $2.1 billion arms fund was spent on the 2015 elections, and has been reporting extensively on key government officials allegedly involved in corruption.

Lately, SR has focused on the first lady, Aisha Buhari, and the alleged funding of her expenses by the Nigerian high commission in UK. The more the first lady denies, the more details SR publishes.

The theory, therefore, is that if any government agency directly goes after Sowore, it would be met with an outcry of persecution. It would not only paint the government as fighting against freedom of expression, it would further damage the image of the President Muhammadu Buhari administration given the popularity of SR. Indeed, it is argued in some quarters that SR played a key role in the demolition of the government of former President Goodluck Jonathan.

Fatodu has categorically denied this theory.

“This (fight) is strictly between us. I am not fighting on anyone’s behalf. I am just out to defend my rights. This is a threat to my life here,” he told TheCable.

Sowore, on the other hand, has insisted that “this is a grand conspiracy” against him.

Malcolm X Reenactment?

The second theory is that there may indeed be a plot to kill Sowore – who, as student union leader at the University of Lagos survived poisoning by the military government of Sani Abacha in 1994. Sowore has survived a murder attempt before — in 2007, he was lured by an agent of a Nigerian politician who visited New York, where SR is based.

The plan, it was later discovered, was to take him out. The agent was lodged at a hotel close to JFK international airport from where he was to leave the country after carrying out the act.

However, Sowore, who is generally regarded as strong-headed, even arrogant, refused to meet the agent of the named politician who had just left as a governor in the south-south. His refusal to attend the meeting saved his life: the entire plot was later revealed to him.

Wednesday’s tiff with Fatodu, his friend, evoked memories of the assassination of Malcolm X, an African-American Muslim minister and human rights activist, on February 19, 1965 in Harlem. The game plan started with a scuffle. A distraction followed, then shots were fired and Malcolm X was taken down.

While the assassination was attributed to the Nation of Islam, of which he was a member before pulling out in protest at integrity issues with the leadership, not a few African-Americans blamed the American government. Malcolm X was a fierce critic of the American state and was often accused of whipping up racist sentiments against white Americans.

The theory is that even if Fatodu is acting alone, he might have played into the hands of those who want Sowore dead for his brand of activism. The rowdiness that followed the physical attack on Sowore in Ikeja could have provided a perfect situation for him to be killed, going by the Malcolm X theory. Sowore does not believe in a coincidence though, but Fatodu insists he is on his own.

Dele Giwa Again?

One of Nigeria’s most celebrated journalists, Dele Giwa, a co-founder of Newswatch magazine, was killed via a parcel bomb in October 1986 when Ibrahim Babangida was the military head of state. He was having breakfast with his colleague, Kayode Soyinka, when the parcel was delivered. It blew him into pieces. Up till today, his killers have not been identified, even though everybody suspected, and still suspects, that it was state-sponsored.

After Giwa’s death, several insinuations and theories came into play. One was that he was investigating a story on a cocaine pusher linked to powerful people in government. The best way to stop the story and scare Nigerian journalists into silence was to take him out, according to this theory.

But there was another theory which began to gain ground, even if unproved: that Giwa was blackmailing people in power over the story. To stop the threat, it was alleged, he was assassinated. This theory was believed to have been pushed out by the security agencies.

Sowore is seeing a parallel. No Nigerian journalist has revealed as much information on corruption in government as Sowore (who insists he is not a journalist but an activist) in the last dozen years. There has been no evidence linking him to blackmail and extortion. Taking him out would, nonetheless, solve a major headache for the people he has offended.

The activist (or hack-tivist, as he also styles himself) is strongly convinced some people might be hatching a plot to eliminate him and then bring up the Dele Giwa theory by saying he was trying to extort money from Fatodu.

“Fatodu is claiming that I demanded a bribe from him, that he has evidence of blackmail. We published our story on him since January 2016. Why has he not said anything like that since then? Why has he not published his evidence? Why is he just talking about that now? This thing is a grand conspiracy but his backers are fighting the wrong person,” he said.

While many of Sowore’s “victims” may not want to kill him or get him killed, they would apparently be relieved if he is eliminated by anybody. At least, that would be one major obstacle removed.

An Eyewitness Account

Below is a Facebook post by Okey Nwanguma on the Thursday events.

Contrary to the conflicting and lisleading accounts and information being peddled on social media about what actually transpired between Sowore and Lekan Fatodu, my finding is that Sowore was never arrested by the Police, contrary to the claim by Lekan which he caused to be widely spread on social media. The police (SCID Panti) has no charge against Sowore which was why he refused to sign a bail bond on day one, and eventually, the DCP left him to go to return the next day. Lekan signed a bail bond before being let go. 

I was at Panti on day 2 and I interacted with both Sowore and Lekan separately. I was also at the Conference presided over by the DCP at his office, with the ACP present. Also present were a retinue of lawyers and activists who came in solidarity with Sowore. Lekan also had a few acquantaces who accompanied him. Dr. Tunji Abayomi was appointed to lead the over 15 lawyers who came for Sowore. Lekan had no lawyer.

At the instance of the police, it turned out to be a reconciliatory meeting. It took great efforts to convince Sowore to settle for mediation. He had insisted on the police going through the whole legal process. Since the police didn’t have any charges against Sowore based on Lekan’s purported petition against him for blackmail, Sowore insisted on his own complaint of attack and threat to his life by Lekan – which actually led to police intervention – being exhaustively investigated.

I understand that it was actually at the office of the CP Lagos, on the first day, when the parties were brought before the CP that he (the CP) suddenly and curiously informed Sowore that he has a petition from Lekan against him alleging blackmail and threat to life. As at yesterday, Sowore was yet to be given a copy of the purported petition despite his demanding for it. Before the CP, Sowore insisted that in spite of Lekan’s purported petition for which he was just being informed about by the CP, Lekan had no right to take the law into his hands by waylaying and attacking him on the street. The CP got infuriated and charged at Sowore. He transferred the case to Panti.

I have known Sowore for years. I never knew Lekan until this incident. At the station, he twisted his stories. From Sowore blackmailing him, he changed to Sowore accusing him of collecting millions of naira from politicians for whom he claimed to be working for as a ‘PR Consultant’. Sowore had written a story alleging that Lekan was a conduit used by Femi Fani Kayode to launder money.

Lekan also claims he is a journalist, had worked with THISDAY and is currently publishing an online Medium in London. I’m yet to ascertain all these because I only just heard of and am yet to see the medium he mentioned as his platform.

He acknowledged that he had been friends with Sowore and had passed through Sowore’s tutelage (his own words). He described the incident that happened between him and Sowore as ‘unfortunate’ and said while he respects Sowore for his accomplishments, he also deserves to pursue his own dream of being another Dangote.

This is to clarify issues and the conflicting and misleading accounts on social media which have elicited misguided, if malicious commentaries from people who seem to have scores to settle with Sowore.

Clearly, there is more to Lekan’s motive for his attack on Sowore than what he has stated. He is definitely not acting alone. Such lunatic confidence and temerity to launch an unprovoked attack on Sowore on the streets of Lagos could only have come from a high-powered political inducement, support and assurance of a reward.

Like Sowore, hate him. But these are the facts.

UPDATE: “I will meet Sowore in court, I have evidence of blackmail” – Fatodu

Lekan Fatodu, the UK-based journalist who accused Omoyele Sowore, publisher of Sahara Reporters, of criminal defamation, says he has nothing personal against him but they must meet in court.

Describing the owner of the news website as his friend of over 20 years, Fatodu said both of them fell out after he refused to give in to Sowore’s demand of a N100 million bribe.

Fatodu said he got a contract from the office of Sambo Dasuki, former national security adviser (NSA), which he delivered and the federal government was satisfied, but  Sowore demanded his own cut from the deal.

The online publisher denied the allegation, saying he had never taken bribe, and could not even solicit such from someone like Fatodu.

“This is someone I bought a ticket for to get out of this country. I was the first person that bought him ticket to leave this country. If I want bribe, it won’t be from him,” he told TheCable.

“Jonathan was there distributing money like water and they would have loved to give me, but I didn’t collect. If I was president of the University of Lagos students’ union and I didn’t take bribe, if I have been doing Sahara Reporters for 10 years without taking bribe, why will I take bribe from him?”

But Fatodu said he had compelling evidence against his estranged friend, and he had made up his mind on suing him to court.

“I am charging Sowore to court, I am pushing a criminal case, a threat to my life, and I am doing it today. I have compelling evidence against him. I have known Sowore for almost 20 years. He demanded N100 million from me from a fictitious N500 million contract from the office of the former national security adviser (NSA),” he told TheCable.

“I did a contract with the ex-NSA in 2014, and my name has not been put out for committing any crime in the course of the contract. I delivered the contract, and the NSA office was satisfied.

“So, for Sowore who is always looking for someone to rubbish to come after me is strange. This is a man I helped when he was begging for assistance, and I have evidence. I have pushed him to where he is, so he should allow me live my life.

“I have never heard that it is a crime to have a contract with government, inasmuch as you deliver what you have been given money for and you do it legitimately.

“There is no reason why he should come after me. He started calling me in 2016, asking for a cut. He said the federal government had asked people to appear before a verification committee on contracts, but the government only listed companies and not individuals.

“I don’t have anything to hide. My refusal to give in to Sowore’s selfish demand made him to malign me and also issue a threat. I have a recording where Sowore said his bank account is bigger than mine. He has been doing this to a lot of people, but today is his day.

“I have nothing personal against him; Sowore is my friend, but I have to defend my rights. Some people are saying it is a civil case, and it doesn’t warrant police intervention. Threat to life is not a civil case, it is a criminal offence.”

Fatodu said the only condition for not going to court was for Sowore to tender an apology.

“He needs to tender an apology over his dubious story before I can consider settling any issue. That is how it is done in any decent society,” he said.

Told to react to the allegation that he was acting on behalf of aggrieved politicians whose deeds had been exposed by the activist-journalist, Fatodu said: “This is strictly between us. I am not fighting on anyone’s behalf. I am just out to defend my rights. This is a threat to my life here.”

But Sowore said there was a grand conspiracy against him, and that he was prepared to go any mile to defend himself.

He accused the police of taking sides with his accuser.

“I was physically attacked by this guy and the police was called. When we got to the police station, they changed the story,” he said.

“The commissioner of police said he had a petition against me. And I was furious, because here was a guy who nearly killed me. That’s the story, not the red herring that I demanded money.

“This problem started in January 2016 when I wrote a story on him being a front for Femi Fani-Kayode. He came and even sent people to beg me to take the story down, but I said I don’t take stories on my website down because I have evidence.

“He then moved to threat, but if he has evidence that I demanded money from him, wouldn’t he have put the information out there? What has he been waiting for since January 2016? I do not demand bribe to do stories, I did not demand a kobo from him, never. Why didn’t he give you the evidence?”

Sowore said he was aware that a governor had called Fatodu to congratulate him on the latest development, but he was not worried.

“I am an activist, activism is what I do. People can hate me or love me for it. That’s what I do. I am not afraid. I heard that a governor has called to congratulate him,” he said.

“If you see the story they were pushing out yesterday, you will know that this is a serious conspiracy. Even the statement released by the police…. I love this country so much. I know there are a lot of people working behind the scene, but I am not afraid.”

“I was never arrested, it was ‘two fighting'” – Sahara Reporters’ Omoyele Sowore

Omoyele Sowore, publisher of Sahara Reporters, says he was never arrested by the police.

Lekan Fatodu, a UK-based journalist, had claimed to have arrested Sowore for “blackmailing and criminally defaming” him.

Both men were at the office of Fatai Owoseni, commissioner of police in Lagos on Wednesday, and Sowore was later transferred to the State Criminal Investigation Department (SCID) in Panti.

But speaking to TheCable, the owner of the whistleblowing website said he refused to sign a bail bond before leaving Panti because he was not arrested.

“It’s not true that I was arrested. To prove that I was not arrested, when they asked me to sign a bail bond, I refused,” he said.

“I said to them, show me why and how I was arrested. They asked the investigation officer if he asked any charge against me and he said ‘No o. It’s two fighting’.

“So I said it is two fighting that brought us here. Where is the allegation and evidence? And they were looking at me.

“There is no evidence on police record that I was arrested. If I go back there today, they may arrest me, but as I am speaking with you today I was never arrested for any crime.”

Sowore said Fatodu ended up signing a bail bond, but he stood his ground.

He denied the allegations levelled against him, saying there was a grand conspiracy against him because of his role in exposing corruption.

BREAKING: Sahara Reporters’ Omoyele Sowore allegedly arrested by Police.

Information filtering in to Omojuwa.Com has it that Sahara Reporters’ popular investigative journalist, Omoyele Sowore has been arrested by policemen.

Lekan Fatodu who is a Publisher and Development Advocate took to his Twitter account to make the announcement with the exact words; “I just got Sowore Omoyele of Saharareporters arrested for criminal defamation and blackmail and threat to my life and career.”

Omojuwa.Com cannot ascertain the veracity of this claim but a shot of Lekan’s tweet clearly shows a picture of Omoyele Sowore being accosted by men in police uniform.

See tweet below: