Nigerian Army releases Daily Trust editor

The Maiduguri bureau chief of Daily Trust newspaper, Uthman Abubakar, who was detained by the Army on Sunday, has been released, the paper confirmed yesterday.

Abubakar was arrested alongside a reporter for the newspaper by armed soldiers who raided Daily Trust’s offices in Abuja, Lagos, Kaduna and Maiduguri.

The reporter, Ibrahim Sawab, had earlier been released, but the army kept Abubakar in detention amid international condemnation.

The army defended its action, accusing the paper of jeopardizing national security.

The newspaper had on Sunday reported on efforts by the military to retake Bags in Borno, seized earlier by the insurgent group, Book Haram.

The editor-in-chief of Daily Trust, Mannir Dan-Ali, yesterday announced the release of the editor.

He said  Abubakar was taken back to the Maiduguri office by an unnamed Army major who handed him over to a security staff at the paper’s office.

According to him, Abubakar said he was treated courteously. He, however, said his mobile phones and laptop were still with the military.

“They told him that they need time to finish the forensic checks they are carrying out on the equipment,” Dan-Ali said.

He said other computers confiscated by the Army from the paper’s Abuja head office have similarly not been returned.

”Senior government officials have continued to say that the items will be released shortly,” he said.

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