ABUJA – Dr Doyen Okupe, Senior Special Assistant on Public Affairs to President Goodluck Jonathan, has described as untrue media reports that the Federal Government had ordered a clampdown on some media houses.
He stated this at a news conference on Saturday in Abuja.
“We wish to state categorically he said
The presidential aide added that the media as the fourth estate of the realm, was held in very high regards by the President.
This, he said, had been practically demonstrated in various ways by the President Goodluck Jonathan-led administration in the last three years.
He recalled that it was President Jonathan who signed the very contentious Freedom of Information Bill into law on assumption of office.
Okupe noted that the President had consistently espoused the principles of openness, accountability and liberalism in his relationship with the media at all times.
“While we sympathise with media houses which might have suffered one discomfort or the other as a result of these security checks we assert, for the avoidance of doubt that the President has not and will never give any order capable of hampering the smooth running of any media organisation o’’ Okupe maintained.
He added that government would neither engage in nor encourage any acts that would constitute an assault on any media organisation or infringe on the freedom of the press.
He added that as soon as there was significant reduction in the level of the security alert, the ongoing exercise would be relaxed.
The presidential aide further maintained, that because we live in very trying times, some sections or sectors of the society might experience some temporary discomfort.
This, he held, was in the overall interest of ensuring that the ideals of freedom , peace and security which we all hold dear was not compromised by a few unscrupulous elements in our midst (NAN)