Ayoola Babalola, a journalist, has been arrested and remanded in prison custody by the officials of Department of State Services (DSS) for criticizing President Muhammadu Buhari’s regime and also the national leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Tinubu.
Babalola is being held at the Ibara Maximum Prison, Abeokuta, Ogun State, for expressing his views – a fundamental right under a democracy (freedom of speech).
Zidec Exclusive gathered that the journalist was seized from his home on Thursday morning 23rd January, 2020 by some alleged members of a cult gang led by President of National Association of Political Science Students of Gateway Polytechnic where he recently graduated.
The cult members claimed that Babalola deserved to be brutalised or killed for writing against them, the school’s management, Tinubu and President Buhari. Though, after brutalising him, the gang handed him over to operatives of the DSS, who later whisked him to the Ogun State Command of the agency in Abeokuta.
Zidec Exclusive was updated by a source from the Department of State Services that the journalist was interrogated over the articles he published in a campus magazine.
Though, during questioning, the journalist was to contact his lawyer but was not allowed to do so, instead the DSS personnel threatened that he will rot in jail.
According to the source; the journalist was forced to make his statement under coercion, and was forced to sign an undertaking that he will desist from writing anything about President Buhari’s government, the APC and its national leader, Bola Tinubu. He was accused of being sponsored by Omoyele Sowore to make inciting statements in a campus newspaper.
While Babalola was briefly moved to the Department of State Services office at the Remo area of Ogun State, he was soon paraded at the Magistrate Court, Abeokuta, from where he was remanded at Ibara Maximum Prison on a six-count charge of alleged breach of public peace and incitement of violence to which he pleaded not guilty.
The judge however, granted Babalola bail on a bond of One hundred and fifty thousand Naira (N150,000) only with two sureties in like sum. The case was adjourned until 27th January for hearing.