The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) on Friday, 27 January 2012, joined its African regional organisation, the Federation of African Journalists (FAJ), in calling on the Federal Government of Nigeria to protect journalists as the increased violence by Islamist group, Boko Haram, continues to claim lives of citizens and threatens to ignite a wider conflict.
On 20th January, Enenche Akogwu, a reporter with Channels Television, died in Kano as he was caught in cross fire between the police and members of the group while covering the sect's onslaught on the city, according to Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), an affiliate of the IFJ and FAJ.
"We are extremely concerned by the escalation of violence which is claiming new victims every day and the dangers it poses to journalists who are covering the Northern region and are putting their lives at risk by breaking stories. We extend the IFJ's condolences to Enenche's family and colleagues," said IFJ president Jim Boumelha.
The NUJ declared that acts of impunity against media and journalists in Nigeria have reached alarming proportions and demanded that the government redouble its efforts to protect the lives and property of all citizens, especially journalists who continue to work in a very hostile and precarious environment.
"With the spiraling violence in Nigeria, journalists who have to report on what is going on are confronting increased life-threatening dangers," said Omar Faruk Osman, FAJ President. "We call for the immediate protection of journalists in Nigeria and their safety to be respected and guaranteed."
The IFJ and FAJ extend their solidarity to the Nigeria Union of Journalists in these dangerous times, and support the union's call for an end to the violence and immediate protection of safety of journalists.
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