Media Foundation for West Africa Blasts Bauchi Police for Refusing to Release WikkiTimes Publisher’s Phone Despite Court Order

The Media Foundation for West Africa (MFWA) has expressed concern over the refusal of Bauchi Police Command to return WikkiTimes publisher’s phone, Haruna Mohammed Salisu, despite a court order mandating the command to do so.

The phone which contains two Subscriber Identity Module (SIM) cards, was seized from Salisu when he was arrested by Governor Mohammed Bala’s security details at Duguri, Alkaleri local council where he was covering the February 25 polls. He was kept for 72 hours before a magistrate court in Bauchi remanded him in prison for another two days.

Despite Court Order, Police Refuse to Release WikkiTimes Publisher’s Phone

On March 9, the magistrate court in ordered the police to release Salisu’s phone and SIM cards. This was after he had been released on bail. But the police have yet to comply with the court order as Salisu’s phone remains in their possession.

The police’s continued withholding of Salisu’s phone is preventing him from doing his work as a journalist and disrupting his personal life. Salisu is worried that the police may be tampering with his phone, accessing its contents, and using the information for their own purposes.

“The Media Foundation for West Africa MFWA is deeply concerned about the continuing harassment of Haruna Mohammed Salisu, publisher of the WikkiTimes news website and calls on the government of Bauch State to uphold the rights of the journalist,” the foundation said in a statement.


On February 25, security officers attached to Bauchi State Governor Mohammed, arrested Salisu in the latter’s hometown, Duguri, while he was covering Nigeria’s presidential elections. His phone was seized, and he was detained. Salisu alleges that the governor ordered his arrest.

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On March 7, Salisu was arraigned at Magistrate Court III on a charge of inciting public disturbance, which he denies. Although he was granted bail, he was not released until March 9 when he met the bail conditions. In addition to the emotional impact of his arrest and detention, Salisu’s family has been adversely affected. His mother fell ill, and his wife is still traumatized by the events.

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The MFWA has condemned the arbitrary arrest and detention of Salisu, along with the seizure of his phone and the police’s refusal to comply with the court order. The MFWA, however, called on Bauchi State Governor to intervene and put a stop to the persecution of Salisu.

At press time, an inquiry sent to Ahmed Mohammed Wakil, spokesman for Bauchi Police Command, had not been responded to.


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