FG Justice Inyang Ekwo of the Federal High Court in Abuja has issued an order to the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) and Minister of Justice to reopen the investigation and prosecution of those responsible for the murder of Dele Giwa, the founder of Newswatch Magazine, in 1986.

Federal Government (FG)
Federal Government (FG)

Dele Giwa was assassinated on October 19, 1986, in his Lagos office through a letter bomb.

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In the judgment delivered on Friday, the court emphasized that the AGF is obligated to prosecute and penalize the killers of media practitioners in the country.

The ruling extends beyond Dele Giwa, requiring investigations into the killings of other journalists in the course of their lawful duties, with perpetrators brought to justice by the law.

The Incorporated Trustees of Media Rights Agenda (MRA) had taken the AGF to court for the enforcement of fundamental rights of media professionals to safety, as guaranteed by the 1999 Constitution (as amended) and African Charters on Human Rights.

Justice Ekwo, in his judgment, directed the Federal Government to ensure the adequate protection and safety of journalists’ lives, as enshrined in Sections 33 and 39 of the Constitution and Articles 4 and 9 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights.

This decision signifies a significant step towards justice for slain journalists and reinforces the commitment to safeguarding the lives of media professionals in the country.

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