ABEOKUTA – Nigerian Journalists have continued to expressed contradicting opinion on the demolition of Yinka Aiyefele’s radio station, Fresh FM, Ibadan by Oyo State Government.
The Oyo state government in the wee hours on Sunday demolished the media house for contravening planning laws of the state.
But the State Governor, Abiola Ajimobi had confessed in a viral video tape that he was compelled to pulled down the radio station following complaints that, the station owner, Aiyefele did not support his government.
However, journalists who spoke on the monthly Inkline WhatsAp group discussion, berated the governor’s action, describing it as inhumane and barbaric.
The discussants explained that, the governor’s action was to cage the press and impinge on the freedom of information act.
They argued that, the Oyo state government should have waited for the outcome of the court injunction sought by Fresh FM management before taking action.
Speaking on the topic, “Crisis of Media Freedom in a Democratic Nigeria” a Case of Study of Fresh FM, Ibadan, Olayinka Olukoya of Nigerian Tribune maintained that, the demolition should not have been the next step.
Olukoya blamed the state government for destroying the radio house without exhausting all the judicial process.
In his own submission, Kunle Olayeni of New Telegraph advised journalists to remain undaunted and unfazed in the face of media oppression by the Nigerian government.
He queried the rationale behind the demolition, saying if truly the building contravened planning laws as claimed by the state government, why didn’t the state government also demolish other buildings in that area.
Olayeni, a former Chairman, Correspondents Chapel of Ogun NUJ urged the National leadership of NUJ and RATTAWU to organize solidarity rallies to reprimand the Oyo State government.
Also speaking, Segun Omowunmi described the demolition exercise as sheer display of administrative recklessness by Oyo state government, accusing the political class for picketing the judiciary arm of government.
In his own statement, Wale Oluokun of Radio Nigeria, posited that, the governor’s action was in order, alleging that, Aiyefele was aware of violating the planning laws, but decided to bend the rule to his favour.
“Nigeria elites are in the habit of bending the rules to achieve virtually every thing. The result of which negatively affect all of us. Ayefele was aware he was constructing on the Major road set back and he used power money or connection to get it approved. Is it right? In whose interest?”, Oluokun queried.