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Ben Ayade’s in-law behind Agba Jalingo’s arrest – Report

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A PETITION by Elizabeth Ayade, sister-in-law to Cross River State governor Ben Ayade, led to the arrest of a journalist Agba Jalingo, according to a report by Cross River Watch.

Jalingo is the publisher of Cross River Watch.

According to the report, Elizabeth Ayade claimed that Jalingo wrote a defamatory article about her and demanded N500 million as compensation.


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The report said a letter served on August 14 gave Jalingo two weeks to delete the article, or redress would be sought in court.

But Jalingo was arrested on Friday, five days after, by security operatives who laid siege to his residence for hours.

According to Facebook posts by Jalingo on Friday, his wife and daughter were held hostage by the policemen who came into Lagos from Abuja to secure his arrest.

“I don’t know who sent the police, but they have held my wife and daughter hostage downstairs. I don’t feel safe,” he noted in one of the posts.

Cross River Watch also reported that hours after the siege on Jalingo’s residence, a staff of the media house was chased into the office promises by a grey Toyota Corolla with tinted glasses.

Jalingo had reported that a law lecturer at the University of Calabar being tried by a court in Abuja for examination malpractice had been sitting exams for a “prominent Obudu woman”.

In August 2019, Jalingo was arrested based on allegations of terrorism, treasonable felony and attempts to overthrow the government by the Cross River State governor, Ben Ayade.

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He was remanded at the Afokang Prison in Calabar for 179 days before his release.

Jalingo was also arrested in 2021 by officials of the Cross River Police Command over a planned June 12 protest.

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Ijeoma Opara is a journalist with The ICIR. Reach her via vopara@icirnigeria.org or @ije_le on Twitter.

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