By Ovasa Ogaga, ———– January 12th, 2017 —————-
He was however freed without charges, hours after he was detained by the police.
Confirming his release Wednesday night to the media, Olanrewaju Suraj, a friend of Mr. Sowore said: “He has been released without charges and without parting with anything.”
Mr. Sowore was arrested on Wednesday afternoon after he was attacked by Lekan Fatodu, a Nigerian journalist based in the U.K., and taken to the Criminal Investigation Department in Panti, Yaba, Lagos State.
While confirming the arrest, the spokesperson for the Police Command in Lagos State, SP Dolapo Badmos, told the media that Sowore was arrested over an alleged threat to life and blackmail of a London-based journalist, Lekan Fatodun.
According to her, Sowore was picked up in his home by policemen attached to Area ‘F’ command, Ikeja, following a petition by Fatodun, alleging that Sowore published a story alleging that he (Fatodun) was involved in money laundering.
She added also that the publication alleged that Fatodun was assisting politicians to move money out of the country, which according to the petitioner have exposed him to ridicule.
“The publisher was arrested this evening over threat to life and blackmail. Investigation is still going on,” she said.
Denying the allegation, Sowore accused the police of being hostile towards him and planning his ordeal with Fatodun.
In a Facebook post after his arrest, he also accused Fatodun of assaulting him in the presence of the police.
He said, “After the police “intervened” soon as I was attacked by Lekan Fatodu and his friends in Lagos we were taken to the CP’s office in Lagos.
“Turns out he was in on this, he pulled out a supposed petition written by Lekan from his hat after that he became very hostile towards me and ordered that we be driven to State CID, at Panti in Lagos.
“It is very obvious that this was planned between Lekan Fatodu and the police. They offered him unbridled support as he continued attacking me in the presence of the police. I could have been (sic) I am familiar with this style of the Nigerian police. We are now being driven to Panti in Yaba res (sic) of Lagos.
Reacting to the development Mr. Suraj, according to PREMIUM TIMES said his friend was released shortly after making a statement to the police, who did not ask him to do more.
“They only advised us to see tomorrow for peace and reconciliation efforts,” Mr. Suraj said. “We intend to take the advice of the police and meet with Lekan Fatodu tomorrow to settle everything.”