Frontline human rights group, One Love Foundation, has tasked online media organisations to be professional in the discharge of their duties.
The charge was made by Chief (Dr) Patrick Eholor, president of the organisation, while reacting to an altercation between some commuters in the city of Ibadan, Oyo State, and the Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO) Muyiwa Adejobi in the traffic. Commending the PPRO for his maturity in the discharge of duties, the group said he displayed maturity in handling a situation that would have gone awry, by inviting law enforcement agents to handle the situation.
It’s words “Our group, One Love Foundation is an NGO commited to the promotion, defence of human rights, equality of all citizens and justice for everyone all over the world.
As a group, we are deeply concerned about different narratives on the social media and online platforms about security agencies and their staff, this time, about the hardworking and press-friendly Nigeria Police Force’s Public Relations Officer (FPRO), Muyiwa Adejobi, who was unfairly accused of abuse of power by some news platforms, with the most prominent one of them being FIJ online recently.
The report is about an altercation in Ibadan, between some young men, Samuel Oluwatosin Ige, Ayomide Taiwo and Temitope Yusuf Akinigan and the PPRO (SEE report here: https://fij.ng/article/powerful-police-pro-muyiwa-adejobi-locks-3-friends-up-for-disagreeing-with-him-in-traffic/).
Although we will not like to go into much details, One Love Foundation, stands with established laws that guide citizens in the country. According to Section 16 of the Oyo State Road Traffic Management Authority Law 2009 as amended which partly stipulates that the authority shall foster partnerships among the government, local authorities, the private sector and civil society organizations to raise awareness to improve road safety,” it has become very imperative and important to state, that after careful, independent analysis and discreet investigation by our media team on this matter, we wish to react as follows.
- First, the PPRO, Mr Muyiwa Adejobi has the fundamental human right and where perceived crimes has been commited against road users and where commuters are in breach of the Oyo State Road Management Authority regulations, he can as matter of first choice report such to the authorities for prompt investigation and prosecution in that regard. As an NGO, we seriously wonder why the media trail by some online news medium to send a different narrative, other than what has truly transpired.
- From the news report by FIJ online media, is clear that the commuters has sinister motives to push and send a false narrative of what actually transpired between the parties, and One Love Foundation frowns at this. As a Foundation, we have independently investigated this matter and our interim findings show that the above commuters were arrested, but it was never at the behest or directive of Officer Muyiwa Adejobi. It was a routine investigation by police officers assigned on this matter and in line with constitutional provisions of charging suspects, who have commited a known traffic offence, where all promptly charged to court within 48hours.
3: Our media investigations reveal that the aforementioned commuters on the said day, from account of stories we have, were rowdy, unbehaved, and were actually breaching the public peace of commuters on the road on the said day. It was only imperative that Officer Adejobi report the matter to a nearby police station to save the situation not as a police officer, but as a private citizen who has his fundamental rights also.
More importantly, One Love Foundation media team on mails and Facebook direct message sent to the publisher of FIJ news, Fisayo Soyombo, on whether Officer Muyiwa Adejobi was given the benefit of fair hearing his own side of his story, before publishing has not yielded any success, as Soyombo has failed to respond to any inquiry.
Furthermore, One Love e Foundation as ably led by Dr. Patrick Eholor wish to restate that as always, Nigeria Police officers are our friends, we must always support them at all times when they are are seen doing the right thing. We are not however holding brief for Adejobi, we however believe that it is important that the records are set straight and the proper narrative of events are what is being reported by online news in this era of fake news reporting.
Consequently we also aware that the above case of traffic offence against the aforementioned commuters is now subjudice and subject of litigation in a competent court of Oyo State. So in this regard, and in line with the sacred principle of status quo, urge all news and online medium on this matter, to maintain and give a fair reportage of this case without breaching the underlined principle of sub judice.
Lastly we urge FIJ news online to always verify information as sensitive as this above mentioned and give parties proper benefit of fair hearing, which is a constitutional provision, before reportage of same.
As a body, One Love Foundation will keep monitoring developments in this case, and we should know that police officers like Officer Adejobi, who has distinguished himself in service deserve our encouragement at all times. We pray for a crime free Nigeria and better relationship in this regard.
For: Head of Media
One Love Foundation.