By Isaac Olamikan, Senior Correspondent, Benin
Deputy Lead of WIG For All, has warned the publishers of Sahara Reporters to stop maligning the image of the Director General(DG) of the State Security Service(SSS) or face legal action.
He described as ridiculous and baseless the recent allegation by the publication that the DG of SSS has used his office to influence a space for his son in the ongoing under 17 world cup tournament in Brazil.
Otuakhena said that the allegation was thrown up as a banana skin for the DG and the State Service.
According to Otuakhena, “there are holes around this publication in that NFA has no case with the SSS and SSS is not the coordinating anti-corruption agency in the country.
“So how could the DG influence an outcome that he has no direct or supervisory power over? All these make the report a lightweight that holds no water.
“The DG of State Security Service (SSS) is an adopted son of the Niger Delta and those who have no reckon with quality are hiding under misinformation to trouble security leadership in the country.
“His superb intelligence, sedate, charming candor, disarming mien and almost beautiful face accounts for the cordial, coherent and coordinate security intelligence ambience that we now enjoy
“Assuming the young man is even the son of the DG of SSS, does being the son of a public officer disqualifies anyone from sport. Or are the sons of public officers barred from sport on ground of conflict of interest?
“We must transcend the misguided perception of sport skills as the preserve of few persons.
“No doubt, Sahara reporters’ have brought serial siege to journalism profession in Nigeria. This is another instance that justifies fake news as a national emergency. The simple politicizing of a youthful sports engagement by Sahara reporters is an affront on our sports industry, this we view as unpatriotic, and a reflection of the anti-people information that the media house and its cohort have been peddling
As a civil society group with focus on defending human right at the grassroots, we have promoted community journalism and human right since 2011. Nevertheless, there is need for sensitive media report to be laden with effort and evidence. There is a call for courage for investigative journalism over breach of code of conduct by public officers.
“This must not be substituted by blight junk journalism which is an option among poor choices. We will commence a civil legal action on behalf of the DG should Sahara Reporters or other media houses continue to malign the integrity of our mentor.”