*Bail conditions are unacceptable, condemnable
Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), has condemned in strong terms the continuous incarceration of Kaduna-based journalist, Mr. Luka Binniyat, who has been in Kaduna Prison for eight days.
Vice President NUJ, South East, Comrade Christopher Isiguzo, expressed this in an interview with newsmen after visiting Binniyat in prison on Thursday.
“We are clearly condemning the incarceration of Luka Binniyat in particular and other journalists. This is quite unacceptable to NUJ. More so, when he is not been found wanting in the discharge of his duties as a journalist.
”We want to also express displeasure to conditions attached to his bail by a Kaduna High Court. We are talking about a journalist and not a criminal or hoodlum. He is not part of those asking people to vacate any part of the country and you are attaching such stringent bail conditions to him,” he said.
Speaking further, Comrade Isiguzo said that the entire NUJ would settle for nothing less than his release. “We are, therefore, calling for the immediate and unconditional release of our colleague.
”The CJN and the NJC should also intervene on the judges so that they don’t continue to drag the image of the judiciary in the mud,” he explained.
Earlier during the visit, Isiguzo assured Binniyat that NUJ family will always stand with him. “We in NUJ know how to fraternise with our colleagues. Please keep hopes alive, it’s just a matter of time before you know, you will be out of here,” he assured.
Also speaking during the visit, Vice President NUJ North Central, Chief Wilson Bako told Binniyat that he should be rest assured that his persecution has made him a hero.
“The NUJ is a family and no matter where one of us has a problem, we will go there and see how we can resolve it,” he assured.
For the Chairman NUJ Kaduna Council, Comrade Adamu Yusuf, words are not enough to appreciate the kindness of the visitors. “On behalf of NUJ Kaduna, we thank you for your time and patience to come and give us this massive solidarity. Kaduna will always reciprocate such support to you whenever the need arises, ” he said.
He assured Binniyat that after the bail conditions were announced, the state executives of the council had met and were planning to convene an emergency congress where the next line of action would be taken.
Binniyat thanked the visitors for their kindness, while urging journalists to remain strong and do their jobs without fear or favour. “Don’t get intimidated. If you have facts on a story, go ahead and do it. I have no regrets being here, but I believe I would be vindicated. Though the pointers are not assuring, I still have faith in the judiciary as the hope of the common man,” he submitted.
Others on the visit were the Chairman Enugu NUJ Council, Comrade Rex Arum, immediate past Chairman, Kogi NUJ Council, Comrade Ali Arabor, immediate past Secretary NUJ Kaduna Council, Chief Dominic Uzu and Online Editor New Nigerian Newspapers, Jacob Onjewu Dickson.