This Day (Lagos)

Nigeria: Newswatch - Group Backs Ekpu, Others Against Ibrahim

Moved by the plight of the trio of Messrs Ray Ekpu, Yakubu Mohammed and Dan Agbese, founders of Newswatch magazine, to reclaim the management of their media outfit from Mr. Jimoh Ibrahim, who is now on a collision course with both management and staff of the organisation, the Coalition of Civil Society Organisations for Transparency in Governance has thrown its weight behind the move to take back the news magazine company.

The National President of the group, Comrade Ibrahim Alih, who spoke to newsmen on the recent crisis facing the takeover of the magazine by Ibrahim, lamented that Nigerians and particularly, lovers of objective journalism like what Newsawatch magazine represents are worried that Ibrahim will run the media outfit aground.

Alih who commended the courage of the original owners of Newswatch in speaking out, described the forceful seizure of the company by Ibrahim, who went in as a core investor from the founders that are reputable journalists known everywhere in the world for their integrity and objectivity in the profession as an extension of Jimoh's business empire to the public sector even after acquiring Nigeria's properties through controversial means from the Federal Government.

He urge Nigerians and the international community to stand behind Ekpu and others in prayers and goodwill in their journey to reclaim their hard earned outfit from a businessman who has become known for his penchant for buying companies and killing them.

"Nigerians must rise up in prayers at this critical moment for the founders of Nigeria's most popular magazine and mouthpiece of democracy, 'Newswatch' as a core investor, Mr. Jimoh Ibrahim wants to take away the company from its original owners through legal technicalities."

"The trio of Ekpu, Mohammed and Agbese must have fallen cheap for the antics of Mr. Jimoh Ibrahim who is known for acquisition of very lucrative ventures belonging to individuals and government using legal jargons and technicalities. We must rise up as lovers of objective journalism being practiced by these exceptional Nigerians to ensure that no man is allowed to kill the vision and mission which Newswatch magazine has brought to bear everywhere in the world.

"Every available record in the court of public opinion has shown how these elements who astronomically have acquired such ventures in the past as nothing to write home about and any attempt to subject the true owners of this property to unnecessary psychological trauma would be rebuffed by the Nigerian Civil Society".

"The people of Nigeria are calling on Mr. Jimoh Ibrahim to have a rethink and stop this shameful dance with these harmless patriots who have sacrificed all their lifetime to the service of nation and humanity," he also added.

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