DIRECTOR of the International Press Centre, IPC, Lanre Arogundade, was reportedly detained, yesterday, by officers attached to the Department of State Services, DSS.
According to Arogundade, he had just arrived at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, in Lagos, from The Gambia, when he was detained by DSS operatives around 3:30 pm.
The IPC director, who said he had gone to Banjul, The Gambian capital, to train journalists on conflict-sensitive reporting, said his passport was seized.
Arogundade, on his Facebook page, wrote: “This is me at the DSS office at the International Airport, Lagos, where I’m being held or detained against my wish. I have just returned from Banjul, where I went to train Gambian journalists on conflict-sensitive journalism.
“Ever since the days of military rule, I get molested by DSS and Immigration at the airport. This nonsense has to stop”
It isn’t yet clear why he was detained, as the DSS failed to officially comment on the development.
However, not long after, he was said to have been released.
Confirming his release on his Facebook page, he said: “To all, thanks. My passport has been returned by the DSS and I’m now leaving the airport despite arriving at 3:30 pm. I will update further.”
Meanwhile, Femi Falana, SAN, has described the DSS action as “illegal”.
In a statement issued prior to Arogundade’s release, Falana said the IPC director isn’t on the country’s watch list nor did he commit any offence in The Gambia “to warrant his arrest and detention by security operatives in Nigeria. The harassment cannot be justified.”