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IPC raises alarm over surveillance of it premises

IPC raises alarm over surveillance of it premises

The International Press Centre, IPC, has raised the alarm over alleged reconnaissance of its premises by security operatives.

In a statement made available to journalists on Tuesday, the leadership of the centre alleged that two men in mufti, who eventually identified themselves as officers of the Nigeria Police Force, approached one of the staff members of the centre right at the entrance to the office’s premises at Dideolu Estate, Ogba, Lagos, Nigeria.

The police officers who claimed to have parked at the location for a while before the actual engagement, reportedly told the IPC staff that their mission was to carry out surveillance on the premises regarding a press conference that was held at the hall of the centre on June 6, 2024, by some organisations on the activities they planned for the anniversary of June 12.

Refusing to state their names, the police officers, IPC said, admitted that their superiors sanctioned their presence to investigate whether the nationwide protest was being planned at the centre, ahead of the said date.

“Last Friday, two men who identified themselves as officials of the Lagos Neighbourhood Watch had also called at IPC demanding to know about an alleged protest following the press conference, ” IPC further stated

Decrying the unwarranted siege on its premises and the attendant intimidation of its staff, IPC, according to the statement which was signed by its Press Freedom Officer, Melody Akinjiyan, is neither planning nor organising any protest on June 12 or any other day.

The management of IPC, the statement said, demands an immediate halt of the siege as it further undermines the civic space while constituting another dimension to the spate of attacks on press freedom and the right to free speech in Nigeria.

The IPC facility had been used by diverse interest groups and individuals since the establishment of the centre 25 years ago, its management insisted.

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