A Chief Magistrates’ Court 3 sitting in Bauchi State, presided over by Ahmed Musa, on Tuesday, remanded the publisher of an online media outfit based in the state, Haruna Mohammed, for allegedly “inciting disturbance of public peace to blackmail” the state Governor, Bala Mohammed.
A copy of the allegations being levelled against Haruna, 32, which was sighted by our correspondent after the hearing on Tuesday, showed that the complainant, the state Commissioner of Police, Aminu Alhassan, accused the journalist of hiring some women to incite disturbance of public peace by instigating them to make utterances that would prejudice the peace and wellbeing of t voters at a polling unit in Duguri ward of Alkaleri Local Government Area and to blackmail the governor in his ward contrary to Section 114 of the Penal Code.
When the case was mentioned in court, the accused denied all the charges levelled against him.
Haruna Mohammed, from the Ministry of Justice, announced that the Attorney-General of the state would like to take over the case from the police and continue with it as contained in the 1999 constitution as amended.
The Presiding Magistrate adjourned the case till Wednesday, March 1, 2023, to enable him to rule on the bail application filed by the counsel for the accused, SG Idrees.
gathered that the accused journalist was arrested in Duguri, the hometown of the governor on Saturday, February 25, while covering the presidential and National Assembly elections and was taken to the police Criminal Investigation Department before his arraignment on Tuesday.
The court remanded Mohammed at a correctional centre in the state pending the determination of the bail application.
The Bauchi State Police Command also confirmed the arrest and detention of the journalist.
The command’s spokesperson, SP Ahmed Wakil, confirmed the arrest in a telephone interview with journalists.
He said, “The police actually received a formal complaint that a journalist was inciting the electorate during Saturday’s general elections.
“That was why we quickly intervened to ensure we maintain law and order, especially at this period.”