Exclusive: By Adenike Lucas
Another popular blogger and social commentator has been arrested on suspicion of cyber stalking DENISAURUS News understands.
Mr Musa Babale Azare from Abuja was allegedly arrested by loyalists of the Bauchi state Governor, Abububakar Mohammed, according to RightsAfrica.
In a tweet @RightsAfrica who broke the news of Mr Azare’s arrests said “suspected agents in Bauchi State Governor abducted journalist, Muza Azare, from Abuja on allegations of cyber-stalking.”
A Facebook user was able to shed more light into the arrest. He claimed that at “4:48pm a police pick up with registration number YDB 21 7AA Blue color dark with Nigerian Police Force (Bauchi State Command) written all over it, kidnapped the person in picture (Musa Azare) at No. 33, Lome Crescent, Zone 7, Abuja.
The person also claimed that those who took Mr Azare were “under the directives of Bauchi State Government.”
Mr Azare’s infinix Note 3 phone was broken in the middle of his arrest, while those trying to stop those arresting him from carrying out the directive given to them were threatened.
In a Facebook chat, a loyalist of the Governor, Isaq Magaji accused the blogger of “cyber stalking.” A crime that carries a fine of not more than N7,000,000,000 or imprisonment for a term of not more than 3 years or both, if convicted.
The hash tag #FreeMusaAzareNow has been set up on social media to demand for Mr Azare’s release.
This arrest comes only a few days after Abubakar Sidiq Usman, a popular blogger and publisher also known as Abusidiq was arrested by the EFCC for publishing articles that accused the current Acting Chairman of the commission of corruption and bullying core staff.
Operatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC led by Sambo Mayana who arrested Abusidiq in the presence of his young family, claimed at first that they were investigating a stolen Toyota parked in his house. After producing the original document for the car, he was shown a warrant for his arrest.
According to Abusidiq he was accused of cyber stalking the EFCC and its staff. Many believe publishing an article which was unfavourable to Mr Ibrahim Mustafa Magu had led to his arrest.
It was Abusidiq’s arrest that made many aware of the Cyber Crime Act which was signed to law by former President Dr Jonathan Goodluck.
Unfortunately, Mr Magu’s arrest of Abusidiq has set precedence for others who want to stifle the freedom of the press.