Detained AIT Journalist Discharged by Courts


A chief magistrate court in Abuja has dismissed the case against an African Independent Television (AIT) reporter, Mr. Amaechi Anakwe, on charges of character defamation brought by, controversial Police Commissioner, Joseph Mbu.  Anakwe was arrested and detained for referring to the Assistant Inspector General (AIG) of Police, Mr. Joseph Mbu on air as a “controversial” police officer, on October 2, 2014.

Mr. Anakwe was consequently charged before a Chief Magistrate court for defamation of character. The  Anakwe’s counsel, Mr. John Kalu had urged the court to oblige him with a copy of the First Information Report (FIR) to enable him know the offence for which Mr. Anakwe was charged.

The Chief Magistrate, who presided over the court, Mr. Anthony Ogboi, discharged the AIT journalist, after the prosecution counsel, Mr. Chijoke Okezie, orally applied for the withdrawal of the charge by the Nigerian Police which was not opposed by the defence counsel.  The  Mr. Kalu had also urged the court for an order restraining the Nigeria Police and its privies from further harassing or arresting Anakwe.

Though Anakwe was discharged, the request by the defense counsel for a restraining order against the police was not granted on the ground that it would impede the duty of the police.