© 2019 - International Centre for Investigative Reporting
Ayade orders arrest of civil servants leaking information to media
...Leaking privileged government documents is a crime - Chief Press Secretary
THE Governor of Cross River State, Ben Ayade has ordered the arrest of some civil servants for leaking information to CrossRiverwatch, an online news outlet.
The news website reported about the arrest of the civil servants on Tuesday.
One of the CrossRiverwatch publishers, Charles Kalu told The ICIR the arrest was in connection with what the news outlet has been reporting lately about Ayade government.
He added that the identity of those arrested is yet to be established
“We have reported about how Ben Ayade has been collecting money from local government, how he has been asking them to raise money for Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, and to also raise money for the Obudu Airport he’s planning to build,” he said.
Kalu said Ayade ordered the arrest because he knew that information reported by CrossRiverwatch are accurate.
“We knew something like this would happen because there was a time some of the stories we carry led to the arrest of our publisher Agba Jalingo,” Kalu said to The ICIR.
It will be recalled that in August 2019, the publisher of CrossRiverwatch, Jalingo was arrested and charged with treason for his writing and social media posts about Ben Ayade before he was later released on bail after spending 179 days in custody.
Meanwhile, the Cross Rivers Chief Press Secretary, Christian Ita has confirmed to The ICIR in a text message that some civil servants have been arrested, but he added that they will be released very soon so that they can go through the civil service disciplinary proceedings.
Ita said leaking privilege government documents is a crime.
When The ICIR asked him to name the civil servants arrested, Ita said he doesn’t have the details yet.