Ameriques Asie Europe Moyen-Orient Internet Nations unies
Nigeria 2 September 2005

Benin City magazine editor survives murder attempt

Reporters Without Borders voiced impatience and anger today at the Nigerian authorities after a murder attempt last night in Benin City on Peter Iwelomen, the editor of the community magazine Esan, in what is the latest in a series of violent attacks on journalists in Nigeria.

"We call on President Olusegun Obasanjo to finally stir himself and start taking this violence seriously," the organisation said. "Nigerian journalists have had to cope with police violence and a chaotic society for years, but our concern mounts with this kind of attack, the like of which we have not seen for some time."

Reporters Without Borders added that it wanted the police to make a special effort to solve the murder attempt and give Iwelomen protection.

Iwelomen left his Benin City officer at around 8 p.m. yesterday and was driving home when he noticed he was being followed by another car. He accelerated, but the other car gave chase and the gunmen aboard it opened fire from a close distance, hitting his car but failing to hit Iwelomen himself.

The attempt on Iwelomen’s life comes less than a week after an armed attack on Simon Ebegbulem and Osaro Okhomina, who are both Benin City correspondents of one of the biggest Lagos dailies, The Vanguard. Five men brandishing pistols burst into their office at around 8 p.m. on 27 August, held all the staff at gunpoint and roughed up the two journalists, accusing of writing lies. They finally left.

Ebegbulem and Okhomina, who notified their office about the incident, said they did not know the precise motive.

In this country
22 January - Nigeria
Investigation into journalist’s murder entrusted to judicial police
20 January - Nigeria
Journalist escapes attack on her home by armed men
28 November - Nigeria
Four journalists face trial over article suggesting President in poor health
18 November - Nigeria
Online journalist Emmanuel Emeka Asiwe freed after one week
4 November - Nigeria
Second online journalist arrested in one week

in the annual report
Nigeria - Annual Report 2008
Nigeria - Annual Report 2007
Nigeria - Annual report 2006

Africa press releases
3 June - Somalia
Alarm at TV station director’s abduction near Mogadishu
27 May - Gabon
Government imposes news blackout on President Bongo’s health
26 May - Somalia
Radio reporter shot by militia dies of injuries, fourth journalist to be killed this year

africa archives

18 March 2009 - Democratic Republic of Congo
“Bukavu, murder city”: investigation report into murders of journalists in the capital of Sud-Kivu
21 May 2008 - Eritrea
Naizghi Kiflu, the dictatorship’s eminence grise
6 March 2008 - Kenya
"How far to go ?" Kenya’s media caught in the turmoil of a failed election

Sign the petitions
Sign the petition for the release of ten Eritrean journalists