Mohammed Sani-Omolori, the management of the National Assembly led by the Clerk, has been disowned by Bukola Saraki, the President of the Senate, over the stringent conditions imposed on journalists seeking to cover the activities of the Ninth Assembly. On Tuesday, Saraki, in a statement by Olu Onemola, his Special Assistant, alleged that he remained committed to the freedom of the press.
The statement explained that Saraki’s antecedents as the Chairman of the Eight National Assembly showed that he has always believed in the right of journalists to operate unhindered in order to promote transparency. Bukola Saraki, the President of the Senate, therefore, promised to institute and probe into the idea behind the guidelines because neither himself nor Yakubu Dogara, the Speaker of House of Representatives, were aware of it.
The declaration read, “The attention of the President of the Senate, Bukola Saraki, has just been drawn to a story that is circulating on social media about the National Assembly issuing new guidelines to journalists. “These alleged guidelines have not emanated from either the Senate President or the Speaker and will be promptly investigated.
“The public should note that the Eight National Assembly has been committed to the freedom of the press as exemplified by its work to bring governance closer to the people through live streams and live tweets. This is because the leadership of the 8th National Assembly believes strongly in the freedom of the press and in carrying the Nigerian public along. Hence, the Senate President and all his colleagues will continue to work to ensure that these freedoms remain unhindered,” Onemola said.