AMDF Condemns Kidnap Of Kaduna Journalists, Calls For Their Immediate Release

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The Africa Media Development Foundation (AMDF), has expressed shock over the abduction of two journalists and their family members, describing the incident, “as a grave threat to press freedom and the fundamental rights of journalists to operate without fear of violence or intimidation”.

A statement issued by AMDF Press Freedom Manager, Zhiroh Jatau noted, “Heartbreaking report reaching us on the abduction of two Journalists in Kaduna State, Nigeria along side their families has left AMDF as well as colleagues in a state of shock. The families were kidnapped on Saturday, 6th July 2024 at their residence in Kaduna.

“The Africa Media Development Foundation (AMDF) is deeply distressed and outraged by this heinous act which represents a grave threat to press freedom and the fundamental rights of journalists to operate without fear of violence or intimidation.”

She explained that journalists play an indispensable role in the society by informing the public, holding the powerful accountable, and contributing to the democratic process, lamenting that the abduction of the colleagues is not just an attack on individuals but an assault on the entire journalism profession and the principles of freedom of expression.

“We express our deepest solidarity with the Nigerian Union of Journalists (NUJ) Kaduna Council, the affected journalists, and their families during this extremely challenging time. We call for the immediate and unconditional release of all kidnapped journalists. It is imperative that the authorities act swiftly and decisively to ensure their safe return and bring the perpetrators to justice,” she said.

According to her, “The security situation in Kaduna and Nigeria at large is of great concern and has inflicted fear amongst citizens. AMDF calls on all security agencies to intensify effort in addressing this challenging situation. The Federal Government must be proactive in the fight against insurgency and banditry. The Legislators should create bills and formulate laws for the hasty prosecution of those found guilty.”

Considering the deteriorating security in the country, the Manager said the idea of State policing has become imperative for all stakeholders to revisit and review to meet the needs of individual state in the country.

In these troubling times, she explained that it is more important than ever to stand together in defense of press freedom and the safety of journalists, stressing that they remained committed to advocating for the rights and protection of media professionals across Africa and will continue to work towards a safer and more secure environment for all journalists.

AMDF, she said called on all media organizations, civil society groups, and international bodies to join in condemning the abduction and to support efforts aimed at securing the release of the kidnapped journalists.

“AMDF also encourages journalists not to be demoralized by the incident but continue with their duties diligently,” the statement said.

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