4:42 pm - Thursday January 19, 2992

Press FREEDOM Under Attack: Nigerian Epoch Times Journalist, LUKA BINNIYAT Handcuffed, Brutalised for exposing Police non-challant genocide against Christians in Northern Kaduna State …arrested since November 4, arraigned under Section 24 (B) of the Cyber crimes Act with electronically transmitting information *The charge relates to Binniyat’s story on October 29 titled, “In Nigeria: Police Decry Massacres as ‘Wicked’ But Make No Arrests” where he quotes Senator Danjuma Laah, who criticized Kaduna’s Commissioner of Internal Security and Home Affair’ Samuel Aruwan for concealing facts on genocide *“My life is in continuous danger daily since I have written a lot about the plight of Christians under persistent attacks in the hands of Islamist Fulani militia groups. I have challenged the narratives of the Kaduna state government on the issues of security and the killings in Kaduna State”-BINNIYAT *“Nigerian authorities should cease all legal proceedings against journalist Luka Binniyat, release him immediately, and reform the country’s laws to prevent the criminalization of journalism”-Angela Quintal, Africa program coordinator for the Committee to Protect Journalists *BY TIMOTHY AKPAN/RELIGIOUS Editor, Middle-Belt Nigeria

Press FREEDOM Under Attack:

Nigerian Epoch Times Journalist, LUKA BINNIYAT Handcuffed, Brutalised for exposing Police non-challant genocide against Christians in Northern Kaduna State   

…arrested since November 4,  arraigned under Section 24 (B) of the Cyber crimes Act with electronically transmitting information

*The charge relates to Binniyat’s story on October 29 titled, “In Nigeria: Police Decry Massacres as ‘Wicked’ But Make No Arrests” where he quotes Senator Danjuma Laah, who criticized Kaduna’s Commissioner of Internal Security and Home Affair’ Samuel Aruwan for concealing facts on genocide

*“My life is in  continuous danger daily since I  have written a lot about the plight of Christians under persistent attacks in the hands of Islamist Fulani militia groups. I have challenged the narratives of the Kaduna state government on the issues of security and the killings in Kaduna State”-BINNIYAT 

*“Nigerian authorities should cease all legal proceedings against journalist Luka Binniyat, release him immediately, and reform the country’s laws to prevent the criminalization of journalism”-Angela Quintal, Africa program coordinator for the Committee to Protect Journalists

*BY TIMOTHY AKPAN/RELIGIOUS Editor, Middle-Belt Nigeria

HE loves investigative journalism. LUKA BINNIYAT is a brilliant reporter who strongly believes the practice of journalism is not a crime. This experienced journalist working with Epoch Times newspaper has never shied away from ‘putting the feet of public office holders to fire’ for the purpose of accountability. After a prolonged investigation, BINNIYAT published a report titled: “In Nigeria: Police Decry Massacres as ‘Wicked’ But Make No Arrests”. He was subsequently arrested afterwards, handcuffed and brutalised for doing his reportorial job of service to humanity. 

This Christian journalist faces prolonged imprisonment following his reporting of attacks against mainly Christian communities in Nigeria’s Middle Belt and critical assessment of the government’s response.

Binniyat was arrested on November 4, arraigned at the Barnawa Magistrate’s Court in Kaduna state, and charged under Section 24 (B) of the Cyber crimes Act with electronically transmitting information known “to be false.”

A Barnabas Aid contact argued that Binniyat’s arrest “is aimed at silencing any dissenting voice and intimidating both Luka and the southern Kaduna communities.”

The charge relates to Binniyat’s story on October 29, “In Nigeria, Police Decry Massacres as ‘Wicked’ But Make No Arrests.” In his article, Binniyat quotes Senator Danjuma Laah, who criticized Kaduna’s Commissioner of Internal Security and Home Affairs Samuel Aruwan for concealing facts concerning a “genocide against Christians in the southern Kaduna state.”

Binniyat, reportedly disclose to a reliable source that he has “written a lot about the plight of Christians under the persistent attacks from the Islamist Fulani militia groups. He has challenged the narratives of the Kaduna state government on the issues of security and the killings in southern Kaduna.”

Despite being arrested and questioned by security agencies on several occasions, Binniyat “has remained resolute in his challenging the information put out by the Kaduna state government.”

As Binniyat has been charged with a federal offense, he could not be offered bail and must be tried in a higher court. If convicted, Binniyat could face a three-year prison sentence.

Angela Quintal, Africa program coordinator for the Committee to Protect Journalists, said, “Nigerian authorities should cease all legal proceedings against journalist Luka Binniyat, release him immediately, and reform the country’s laws to prevent the criminalization of journalism.”

Attacks on Christian communities in Kaduna state have been numerous. In his report, Binniyat was critical of police for failing to make any arrests after gunmen killed 35 people in two separate attacks on churches in the state on September 26.

CERTAINLY, Good journalism costs a lot of money. Without doubt, only good journalism can ensure the possibility of a good society, an accountable democracy, and a transparent government. We are ready to hold every corrupt government accountable to the citizens. To continually enjoy free access to the best investigative journalism in Nigeria, we are requesting of you to consider making a modest support to this noble endeavor.

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